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Plug-in devices, smartphones and OEM solutions jostle for telematics position

Friday, October 6, 2017 - 07:00
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As automakers and legislators look ahead to a future of intrinsically connected cars, the telematics landscape continues to become more crowded with a mix of dongle-based solutions that use the OBD-II port, smartphone apps and proprietary OEM solutions.

For OEMs, built-in connectivity could be a big moneymaker. According to a survey by KPMG, cars with built-in connectivity could offer up to 10 times the revenue streams compared to those without. Research and Markets predicts a compound annual growth rate for telematics of 14.37 percent, reaching $40.84 billion by 2022.

For the automotive aftermarket, there are many challenges when it comes to vehicle telematics. In addition to the threat from OEMs, many emerging companies in the telematics space don’t consider themselves part of the aftermarket channel. They see themselves as outside market disruptors.

Traditional aftermarket suppliers and distributors will need to develop ways to partner with these emerging technology companies to remain relevant, and identify how to take advantage of these emerging systems and the flow of vehicle data.

“Plug-in devices and dongles and vehicle data from those devices is part of it, but not the whole thing,” says Chris Gardner, vice president of programs and member services at the Automotive Aftermarket Suppliers Association (AASA). “They are part of the larger telematics discussion. We’ve been working with other industry stakeholders to develop ways to be sure the independent aftermarket has access to vehicle data going forward.”

AASA is working closely with the Department of Transportation and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to make sure these solutions address consumer privacy and security concerns.

That includes work on a secure vehicle interfaces (SVI) that would enable safe access to vehicle data for third parties, and cooperation with automaker trade associations and international standards body SAE in that effort.

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