New business models and economic requirements such as increasing efficiency, complying with regulations, an increasing number of electric vehicles and the desire for all-embracing mobility concepts are turning the "networking" of drivers and vehicles into an unstoppable process. Telekom has been driving this development with a number of innovations.
Increased transparency, which is due to new ICT applications, leads to improved management, which in turn contributes to cutting emissions. For example, vehicle capacity can be used more efficiently and their maintenance status can be constantly checked, routes can be planned more flexibly and emission-heavy driving habits can be pinpointed. Safety aspects are of paramount importance with all innovations.
Telekom connects board computers to the cloud so that customers can access the Internet and online applications even when on the move. Transmission channels include mobile communications technologies such as UMTS, HSDPA and GPRS.
The Deutsche Telekom Group's Connected Car business area concentrates on four markets:
- Automotive manufacturers: Brand differentiation and customer retention in the automotive industry increasingly depend on online services. Telekom is developing a device-independent platform for manufacturers and service providers.
- Logistics service providers: Optimizing capacity utilization and avoiding empty runs require real-time tracking of vehicles and goods. Telekom is integrating all the players in the logistics network on a modern telematics platform.
- Fleet operators: Higher efficiency, transparency and improved carbon footprint through vehicle and driver management for commercial fleets. T-Systems teamed up with MAN to develop a telematics application that automatically sends vehicle data to the operations center and repair shops.
- Consumers: Secure private communication, social networks and personal information from the cloud.
Deutsche Telekom is also a partner for industry in the field of traffic research. for example in the simDT project that explores options for secure, smart mobility in Germany.
Deutsche Telekom has been offering AutoLinQ, a connected cockpit computer that enables people to go online in their cars, through the automotive supplier Continental since 2011. At the core of the service is an online media center via which all data and apps are managed. These can be accessed from anywhere: the board computer in your car, your smartphone or your computer. Various online services and customizable apps make it possible to work while on the road and provide entertainment and information as well. The system is operated simply by pushing a button for uncompromised driving safety, and is equipped with a variety of special features. AutoLinQ can read e-mails or short messages out loud and answer them via voice control. An online directory can be used to call individual subscribers directly or to select their data as a navigation destination. The system also provides various remote monitoring and remote control options. These can be used to check tire pressure and oil levels or close the convertible roof.
Connected Drive with BMW.
Deutsche Telekom has been offering a similar service since mid-2010 in cooperation with the car manufacturer BMW. Connected Drive is being constantly expanded and currently comes with a smart maintenance system, expanded traffic information, an automatic emergency call service and Google services.
T-Systems collaborated with MAN during the reporting period to develop a telematics application for logistics service providers and fleet operators, which was presented at CeBIT 2012. The application records all vehicle data, evaluates it and then sends it to a portal. Operators can use the portal to analyze the driving behavior of their drivers, determine the next maintenance date and communicate with the drivers. Current driving and sensor data of refrigerated modes of transport are monitored using the Be Cool app. The app notifies drivers on their smartphone when the temperature of their freight is rising.
Another application makes it possible for shipping companies to keep an eye on their entire vehicle fleet using a single screen regardless of the telematics system they use. In addition to displaying location, the application also focuses on current order and freight information.
Various independent studies show that fleet operators' fuel costs and CO2 emissions can be reduced by around ten percent by using different telematics solutions. Telekom is involved in various research and innovation projects in this area:
Vehicle and driver management services.
Telekom has been offering different vehicle and driver management services based on individual solutions for years now. These services provide extensive data to analyze driving behavior and fuel consumption, making it possible to optimize these factors. Users can also control the number of kilometers driven with a real-time navigation system featuring a reporting function.
Real-time calculation of CO2 emissions.
Deutsche Telekom has been working in cooperation with Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit and the Tongji University in Shanghai since November 2010 to develop a way to calculate CO2 emissions in real time. Smartphone applications measure acceleration and braking patterns as well as the route profile of the road traveled and use this information and the manufacturer's consumption data to calculate CO2 emissions. The Tongji University compiles the measured data into an up-to-date chart that drivers can view on their navigation devices and use to plan their route accordingly. The results of a pilot project involving 50 vehicles were presented at Expo 2010 in Shanghai.
Bonus for low-emissions driving.
Telekom and Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) have teamed up to research how driving behavior can be influenced by introducing a CO2 emissions fee for downtown city areas based on these smartphone apps in the Pay as you Pollute project. In a pilot project that was conducted in China in October 2010, car drivers who accelerated less at traffic lights or in congestions, thereby emitting less CO2, were rewarded with parking vouchers. This project was also presented at Expo 2010 in Shanghai.
In 2011, T-Mobile USA developed a special service called DriveSmart that prevents calls while driving. As soon as a cell phone is in a moving vehicle, the call and text message features as well as the use of apps are restricted.
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