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4 Essential Technologies For Driverless Cars

Not so long ago, the concept of driverless cars seemed like a far-fetched science fiction dream. Today? You are likely to find some form of connected technology in almost any 2018 or 2019 car.

While these technologies are still being developed and refined, there are several that are fundamental to the success of this new form of transportation. From IoT to DSRC & 5G, from AI to Blockchain, these technologies are changing the game (many of which will be on display at the Dubai World Congress for Self-Driving Transport).

To learn more, keep reading to discover four technologies that are essential in driverless cars.

1. Internet of Things

The enhanced connectivity of the Internet of Things (IoT) enables driverless cars to become a modern-day reality. Even though today's cars come equipped with high-tech features, the unprecedented IoT movement that powers these cars is predicted to transform the automobile experience.

This is because IoT allows these driverless cars to connect to various devices through the internet. In turn, this permits them to obtain data from smart infrastructure devices such as lane markers, beacons on traffic signals, and signs.

Furthermore, these cars can connect to smart devices installed in other vehicles, as well as smart home devices and cloud platforms. Cars that are connected to IoT are software- and data-centric, allowing them to obtain valuable information via over-the-air software updates to increase safety on the roads.

2. DSRC & 5G

Communication technology is the main obstacle that needs to be mastered to make driverless cars a widespread reality. To be viable modes of transportation, driverless cars need to be able to speak with and listen to other objects and traffic participants in real time. Unfortunately, the current options of Wi-Fi and 4G LTE aren't strong enough to ensure safe roads.

Dedicated Short-Range Communications (DSRC) is a protocol for high-speed wireless communication linking vehicles and infrastructure and is the technology that is currently prevalent in the connected-vehicle market. The competing technology is 5G which, when fully formed, is expected to enable cars to obtain information from their surroundings even before the driver understands.

3. AI

Many newer vehicles are already equipped with some Artificial Intelligence (AI) features such as driver monitoring, speech recognition, camera-based vision systems, virtual assistance, and radar-based detection units.

However, there is still far more enormous potential for AI features in driverless cars. After all, driverless cars have to be able to do more than just follow an assortment of rules or an algorithm. Instead, these cars have to learn and think for themselves, which entails AI.

While advancing AI capabilities, developers are focusing on ways to make driving safer for all those involved, as well as setting it up it to recognize issues before they arise. Generally, it is believed that the presence of AI in cars will make a significant impact on the way that the vehicle can comprehend the driver's requirements more thoroughly.

4. Blockchain

As driverless cars become IoT devices, the ability to securely protect the amount of information that the connected car has is of the utmost importance. For this challenge, it seems like the Blockchain is going to be the future of driverless car security. Industry-specific applications constructed on top of Blockchain can generate new ecosystems where information can be interacted with and transferred in a protected and immutable manner.

In other words, this cutting-edge technology can assist cars in safeguarding the mounds of data it obtains, as well as assuring the precision of it. Furthermore, a Blockchain is more difficult to hack than a conventional database.

When it comes to the development of essential technologies for driverless cars, experimentation and innovation must be encouraged among emerging sectors. Moreover, there must continue to be an increase in the number of companies contributing to the space, to maximize the possible avenues for the next big breakthrough.

For more information on the developments in this area, make sure to purchase your Dubai Self-Driving Transport Congress tickets.


Ahmed Bahrozyan is the Chief Executive Officer of the Public Transport Agency - Roads and Transport Authority in the United Arab Emirates which is responsible for providing for the needs of public transport in the city. He is also Chairperson of the Dubai World Congress for Self-Driving Transport organizing committee.

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