Mobileye thinks it has a maths formula to prove safety of self-driving cars

20 Oct 2017

Image: Stefano Buttafoco/Shutterstock

This week in IoT, Intel-Mobileye thinks it’s cracked a mathematical formula for safety in self-driving cars, while LG and Qualcomm team up for connected cars.

It was a busy week for everything related to the internet of things (IoT), starting with the news that Irish firm Cublic Telecom secured a €20m deal with Australian telecoms provider Telstra to deliver connectivity solutions to the automotive industry.

Cubic Telecom’s partnership with Telstra Wholesale will enable in-car access to a suite of infotainment apps and a Wi-Fi hotspot throughout Australia via the former’s integrated e-SIM and software platform.

Meanwhile, Apple flexed its muscles within industrial IoT with the announcement it is to work with General Electric to deliver the latter’s predictive data and analytics to iPhones and iPads.

The Predix platform is expected to give industrial operators more insight and visibility into the performance of their equipment and operations.

Then, of course, there were issues raised over the security of smartwatches for children after the Norwegian Consumer Council (NCC) issued a report finding that these devices were quite vulnerable to hacking.

The NCC’s director of digital policy, Finn Myrstad, described the issues found as “very serious”. He warned that “these watches have no place on a shop’s shelf, let alone on a child’s wrist”.

Intel-Mobileye creates formula for self-driving car safety

The greatest concern for self-driving car manufacturers and regulators, by far, is proving that these cars will be safe on our roads.

Now, Intel’s subsidiary Mobileye believes it has created a mathematical formula to ensure that a self-driving vehicle operates in a ‘responsible manner’ and does not cause accidents for which it can be blamed.

The proposed ‘Responsibility Sensitive Safety (RSS) model’ provides specific and measurable parameters for the human concepts of responsibility and caution and defines a “safe state”, where the autonomous vehicle cannot be the cause of an accident no matter what action is taken by other vehicles.

“The ability to assign fault is the key,” said Mobileye CEO Amnon Shashua. “Just like the best human drivers in the world, self-driving cars cannot avoid accidents due to actions beyond their control.”

He went on to say that the RSS model formalises this in a way that ensures self-driving cars will operate only within the framework defined as ‘safe’ according to clear definitions of fault that are agreed upon across the industry and by regulators.

LG and Qualcomm team up for connected cars

Sticking with the future of the automotive industry, South Korean tech giant LG recently announced it is teaming up with Qualcomm to jointly develop the latest connected car solutions.

The two companies will also establish a joint research centre in South Korea to develop 5G for vehicle and C-V2X (cellular vehicle to everything) technologies that will lead to next-generation autonomous vehicles.

LG said that, in parts of Europe and Asia, field tests and standardisation activities of C-V2X are already being conducted with roll-out by 2020 in mind.

“We are optimistic that the combined research strength of Qualcomm and LG will yield benefits that would not be feasible working independently,” said Kim Jin-yong, executive vice president of LG’s vehicle components smart business unit.

Samsung launches NB-IoT GPS smart tag

Samsung is the latest to get into the narrowband IoT (NB-IoT) game with the launch of a new smart tag that tracks location through either GPS or Wi-Fi positioning.

Unlike the typical target market of smart cities technology, the Connect Tag is geared towards the consumer to track things like luggage and – quite eerily – children, too.

According to ZDNet, the tag has all the characteristics needed to be classed as NB-IoT. With little consumption of energy, a full charge can last up to a week. It will also have an on-demand feature to create geofencing parameters to alert the user when the tag leaves a certain area, as well as being able to give time and location information in data analytics.

Within South Korea, the tags will work off the telecom provider KT’s NB-IoT network.

By 2023, 1bn people will be using 5G – mostly in China

Most of the world has yet to experience 5G internet connectivity on mobile, but the latest prediction is that 1bn of us will by 2023.

According to a new report from CCS Insight, this would be less time than it took 4G to reach this milestone from today.

By 2022, China will have firmly established itself as the world leader in 5G connectivity with more than half of all subscribers based there, and, even by 2025, will still make up 40pc of the world’s connections as more countries adopt it.

“We see China playing a far more influential role in 5G than it did in 4G,” said Marina Koytcheva, VP of forecasting at CCS Insight.

“Size, scale and economic growth give China an obvious head start, but we expect network deployments to be much faster than in the early days of 4G.

“China will dominate 5G thanks to its political ambition to lead technology development, the inexorable rise of local manufacturer Huawei and the breakneck speed at which consumers have upgraded to 4G connections in the recent past.”

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Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic