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TU Automotive, Europe – it’s all about you

12th November 2018 | Comments Off on TU Automotive, Europe – it’s all about you

TU Automotive Europe 2018 in Munich was a deep-dive into the in-car experience, connectivity, data and the risks and rewards for companies and their consumers. Keynote presentations and panels featured Volvo, Robert Bosch, Scania, BMW, Skoda, Renault and InMotion and many others.

Two interesting and interactive days set out to answer the questions facing the industry and showcase the innovators. The rate of innovation within vehicle technology is dramatically altering global transportation models. From the development of consumer infotainment features to on-demand mobility and ridesharing, to the development of the fully autonomous vehicles – connectivity is the driving force behind the majority of technological advancements.

Vehicles are an extension of the consumer digital lifestyle and the panels explored the fundamental relationship between a customer and their vehicle Sebastian Lasek, Head of Connectivity at Skoda, discussed how consumers are now contactable throughout the product lifecycle consumers via multiple touch points and companies need to learn leverage these opportunities. With increased data and a more integrated approach, the consumer is undoubtedly being impacted, whether it’s the gathering of their personal data, the ability to personalise contact or the way in which in-vehicle services are utilised.

These in-vehicle services are not just the stopgap until the adoption of the autonomous vehicle, but a way to add value for the digitally savvy consumer. In-car technology offers a new exchange for car makers to collaborate with commerce and media industries as well as automotive start-ups. A whole new connected ecosystem is being created not only with car ownership but with the successful integration of new services. Raphael Gindrat, Founder and CEO at Bestmile, spoke about how to get it right first time.

Voice search was discussed in the keynote presentation by BMW, where the question was asked, “Hey BMW – what are your plans for the future?” To address this step change, BMW is launching a digital assistant seamlessly integrated with other third-party platforms. BMW see this as a critical part of the future of the brand and its integration into consumer lifestyle.

In order to stay ahead of the curve, manufacturers need to consider the overall experience, not just the connectivity or the technology and embrace the future trend towards services, and away from ownership. Colin Wilcock from the 5G Infrastructure Association explained that within this experience must be an integrated approach to digital, likely to be using 5G as the foundational technology, with the ability to integrate other technologies such as edge.

Start-ups were also able to share the limelight, exploring their ability to make waves in an industry dominated by incumbents. How can they find their niche and succeed in an ever-changing environment? Part of the solution is finding partners to co-create, collaborate and disrupt. While times are changing OEMs can still be slow to engage and the advice was to pitch to the smaller ones, as they are doing more and faster.

Lars Klawitter, Executive Director at InMotion Ventures, powered by Jaguar Land Rover, explained how to get your foot in the door and gave an account of how to build successful partnerships.

We live in interesting times – overall you get a sense that participants are striving for a transparent, innovative and collaborative future. This is an industry that is changing completely.