Cars in the Clouds

Besides being adopted by businesses at a rapid pace, cloud infrastructure is expanding into new territories. In this digitally transforming world, it may not seem like a surprise to hear that cars are starting to be self-driving. Tesla is the most well known car to integrate software into its vehicles. Many other automotive manufacturers are beginning to invest heavily in the cloud technology. Cloud computing is expanding into an automotive Internet of Things industry, creating parts of autonomous vehicle technology.

self driving cars

Through use of the cloud, cars will be able to communicate with one another to prevent accidents, update traffic information and maps. Additionally, smart automobiles will be able to route its passengers quicker to their destination. With the integration of cloud computing, manufacturers can propel product innovation. A car in the cloud would be able to receive updates via the manufacturer that could add additional cloud-based services. To upgrade your car would no longer mean having to purchase a new one. The cloud will also be able to automatically schedule maintenance checks and alert the driver when it is time for the car to be taken in. Taking the cloud car to the next level, vehicles could even drive themselves to be repaired and maintained without the need of a driver.

With all the data collected within the cloud, it can be analyzed to formulate patterns and reports that can be used for improvements. For instance, say a manufacturer’s car was frequently involved in accidents. The smart vehicle can report the incidents back to headquarters where analysts can get to the root of the issue. Eventually, we will be operating software platforms, no longer just wheels and engines.

Society may be skeptical of this advancement. To let a robot take the wheel of your life and the lives of your families? Nonsense. Studies show that around 80% of vehicle crashes are caused due to human error. Human error could be as simple as looking away from the road for a quick second or as dangerous as having one too many beers before heading on the road home. If autonomous cars were to gain momentum, these variables that cause accidents could be eliminated. It remains crucial that drivers should remain constantly aware of their surroundings even when the self-drive setting is in use. To a certain extent, cloud-connected cars will be more simple than today’s traditional cars. The simple cars require much more care and attention than the newer ones will.

But, is this too good to be true? Like all other cloud-based products, hackers pose as an imminent threat. In previous news, hackers were able to control medical equipment, elevators, home security cameras and more. Before this technology reaches the mainstream market, it is crucial that manufacturers take all steps to mitigate this risk. If hackers were to access your car’s information and applications, there is a risk that they could potentially take over the maneuvering system as well. Those that are skeptical have every right to be, but like all new technological advancements risks need to be taken to grow. Again, to further emphasize the point, regardless if your vehicle has the self driving capabilities, full attention should be towards the road in front of you.