O2 teams up with UK space agencies to develop connectivity solutions for autonomous cars using 5G and satellite technology

Cell service is very cheap and standardized today.

I’m not saying don’t have an LTE type connection, but this is the inexpensive hardware and connection fees. The communication companies are pushing 5G for it’s ability to have low latency or high bandwidth specifically to handle the demanding tasks of self driving. 5G is in no way needed for any of this both today and tomorrow.

It is a much, much easier solution than machine learning blinking lights.

No it is not. For one you have to deploy 5G infrastructure to the entire country, a task which most have said will take decades. Then you have to replace ALL the signals to the tune of tens of thousands of dollars per signal. Then you have to get the entire industry to agree on a standard, which isn’t going to happen easily. Then you have to figure out how to secure it so it can’t be spoofed by a malicious 3rd party and to make sure the visible lights can NEVER be different that the transmitted signals. Then you have to deploy it to all the self driving cars that are already on the road after you’ve spent building this system for the last 15 plus years.

The other option is to write some software for a $5 camera to read the existing signaling systems, something which is already done buy many of the players in the space. It’s spending billions and decades to solve a problem that is already solved and can’t even replace the existing solution because people still need the lights to drive themselves.

Most cars have their owners phone, not a device of their own.

You could be correct, I certainly don’t have the data saying otherwise. However are you sure about this as the 3 cars I own, the oldest being 2013, all have their own data connection. It could be that because of the vast number of older and low end cars still on the road that penetration is still low, but I’d be surprised if it is very low today.

Even if only 10% of cars have a connection today, the problem is density of phones, not the shear number. Individual towers get overloaded, not the larger system. Incrementally adding tower capacity is much easier than replacing the entire system. SDCs will actually lower this number. If we replaced all cars with SDCs today, you would only need 15% of the cars on the road today. I bet more than 15% have a data connection.

5g is needed due to the congestion of the network which will only get worse with more and more hooked up devices.

I personally have never experienced congestion on the network outside a large public event. Even then it has gotten to the pout where even that is rare.


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