All That Energy
The market for EVs—fully electric vehicles—isn’t as large as the hybrid market but has the growth path laid out for the future. Companies like Tesla Motors, www.teslamotors.com, a maker of an upscale EV, are moving the needle on the consumer’s ammeter whenever they show their car. The Detroit Auto Show, perhaps the premier show for new vehicle introductions, has apparently gone wild over Tesla, causing its stock to jump higher and higher.
Before the EV bandwagon has a chance to get rolling, dozens of companies are issuing new programs and products to compliment the new vehicles. AT&T, www.att.com, and Tesla have entered into a new multi-year exclusive agreement to supply current and future Tesla vehicles in North America with high-speed wireless connectivity. AT&T connectivity will power Tesla's remote-engine diagnostics, telematics, and infotainment features such as Internet radio, Web browsing, live traffic, weather, and navigation, all accessed through a 17-in. touchscreen.
AT&T also touted its other initiatives that it had recently unveiled at its Developer Summit, but now made public in the connected-car market: a connected-car innovation center in Atlanta, called the AT&T Drive Studio, and a new global automotive solution and development platform, now called AT&T Drive.
AT&T Drive Studio features a working lab, a showroom to build and exhibit the latest innovations, and it serves as an overall hub where AT&T can work with companies and respond to opportunities presented by automotive manufacturers. AT&T Drive is the company's connected-car platform—a modular and flexible, global solution that allows automakers to pick and choose what services and capabilities are important to them and allows them to differentiate their solutions in the marketplace. From connectivity and billing solutions to data analytics and infotainment, this platform will allow auto makers and developers to develop their own innovative and customized connected-car solutions, now and in the future.
The company formerly known as “Ma Bell” provides mobile internet access in vehicles manufactured by both domestic and foreign automobile makers. AT&T was the first to enter the market with a proprietary, global SIM platform which made it possible for automotive companies, consumer and M2M equipment makers among others to work through a single carrier to wirelessly enable and connect products across the globe. AT&T is certainly getting hungry for the connected-car market and now the race is on to own as much of it as possible.
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