Debating Mobility Lunch 15 March 2016

“ITS, Connected Mobility, and Data Economy” Event Report


Mobility 1


Opening by Host MEP, Adina-Ioana Vălean


Mrs Vălean said that as former rapporteur for the eCall legislative dossier, she knew this topic would bring a crowd (the event was attended by about 120 delegates). The digitalisation of transport is an enormous opportunity for businesses. By 2020, 20 billion connected devices are expected to be in use around the world, compared to the current 6.4 billion. Cars are the largest and most single priced possession of consumers and need to benefit from connectivity.


First panel: providing services in-vehicle


Mobility 2Mr. Carabin said that the European Commission is convinced data will be the fuel for new services but also a tool to reach policy goals of general interest such as emissions’, accidents’ and congestion’s reduction. In the framework of the ITS Directive, the Commission was reflecting on the access and use of transport data. The next step is now to move towards increased communication between vehicles, and between vehicles and infrastructure. The Commission issued the final C-ITS platform report in January and will adopt a Master Plan in the coming months. Mr Carabin reminded the floor that the Commission made a point to include the principles of interoperability, standardisation, security, and open-access in the legislation for eCall.


Dr Maik Boeres then presented the principles that guide the development of future BMW products. They are based on the ACCESS acronym: Automation, Connectivity, Control, Electromobility, Sharing economy, and Safety. He emphasised that BMW thinks a controlled data extended vehicle back-end is needed to manage the flow of data that vehicles generate, to guarantee security, and for the customer to have full control over his or her data.


Laurianne Krid (FIA) presented the “My car My data” campaign. A pan-European survey carried out in 12 countries quizzed consumers about their knowledge and opinion of connectivity. 90% say data generated by vehicles should belong to the driver or vehicle owner. 83% want to give access to data for a given period of time only (not the entire lifetime of the vehicle). People also want to choose between service providers, and are more willing to share certain types of data (for example related to breakdown assistance services but not so much for insurance purposes). Finally, 95% want a legislative framework to secure data generated by vehicles.


The FIA emphasises three principles, such as free competition that ensures service providers can design applications. This, in the FIA’s view excludes models where data transits via manufacturers’ proprietary servers. Secondly, a free choice between service providers for users. Thirdly, a solid data protection framework.


Stéphane Petti from Orange presented the role of mobile operators, who are key enablers of services as they manage the telecommunication infrastructure. He underlined that his sector is operational because it is based on worldwide standards, and it is one of the few sectors that has managed that. He stressed that connected cars are a reality today, but we are not fully reaping their possibilities. Orange therefore helps businesses to come up with new business models: if there is no business value, we hit a limit. This is where the real challenge is, and not so much in the technological advancement needed, like 5G. The deployment of 5G however will be useful, especially to help vehicle automation as it will bring more capacity and reduced latency. Finally, he mentioned that the connected car is one element of a much bigger change that will be the “Mobility as a Service” proposition.


Adrian Gheorghiu presented the view of an aftermarket telematics device producer. He mentioned there is now a ‘gold rush’ thanks to the biggest telematics programme ever in place: eCall. 250 million vehicles are waiting to be retrofitted for eCall. Thousands of small companies are now independently developing devices. The advantage of SMEs is that they have a much quicker time to market to develop products, but their biggest challenge is heavy regulation. On the other hand, a total lack of regulation does not serve the sector either. Regulations should therefore serve as a guidance and a tool for opening markets, but not be too restrictive.


The panel engaged in a discussion about data ownership. Laurianne Krid mentioned vehicle users should have a say. They should be able to switch on and off data transmission. Similarly, there should be a way to give multiple users a choice to give access to their data when they use the vehicle. Dr Maik Boeres from BMW said that what is most crucial is that the data is delivered in a safe and secure way. Mr Carabin mentioned that the C-ITS platform focused a lot on privacy. The ‘data subject’ should give consent about the use of data, and should have the possibility to opt out. Mr Petti from Orange said data certainly does not belong to mobile operators.


Second Panel: Big Data, disrupting mobility


Mobility 3Michael will from the Bavarian State Ministry of the Interior mentioned he believed the principles in the data protection regulation (such as granting the right of consent to users) contain the solutions we are looking for when we are discussing connected cars. In his view, vehicles actually did not need a specific legal framework.


Gijs van der Hulst from Google mentioned two areas Google is working on to improve mobility. In particular safety is a key concern when it comes to digital services being used in vehicles. Google therefore developed ‘Android Auto’ that focuses on the integration of mobile devices to the vehicle architecture. Safety is the key design principle for android auto.


Another area is helping cities solve traffic problems. In Stockholm Google is helping the city solve a particular problem with a tunnel that is experiencing very heavy congestion. It partnered with the city authority to provide real time statistics for the city to make mobility decisions (e.g. diverting traffic). Google is doing similar things in other cities such as Amsterdam. The core principle there is working in partnership. This is actually the same philosophy as for the autonomous Google car project, as the aim of Google with this is to work in partnership with car manufacturers, not to replace them.


Michel Georges from Michelin said that his company has 120 years of experience providing travel information to customers. He believes the fundamentals of mobility are in many ways the same as in the past but that what is key is the quality of the information. Digitalisation has mostly changed the mediums that we use to give information to consumers from paper to web / mobile devices / or in-car. 450 million users use Michelin’s website. Today you can also book a restaurant directly from your car. In 2015, 35 million online bookings were made via Michelin services. Digital travel and tourism information therefore creates a lot of value for businesses.


Craig Burchell from Xerox presented new trends and expectations of the Millennials generation. A striking figure is that 50% of them expect that they will only need a single application on their smartphone in the future that will integrate all of their mobility needs in the city. The key therefore lies in providing seamless and integrated solutions. Mobility as a Service will be a major change.


Dr Hermann Meyer from ERTICO mentioned how his association is focused on helping its members to develop new business models. ITS is serving all major trends (automation, electromobility, the sharing economy, and the service economy). The connectivity of cars is an important aspect, but it is only one part of a much bigger picture that we call Mobility as a Service.


Closing by host MEP, Henna Virkkunen


Mobility 4Mrs Virkkunen expressed how she often worries that the EU is lagging behind the US and other continents in the digital race. However, it was very good to hear there are excellent examples of innovation in Europe. She stressed that we have to focus on ITS for urban areas, and was happy that Mobility as a Service was mentioned several times, as she also believes this is the future.


Source: Forum for Mobility & Society


To view all of the event’s pictures, please click here.







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