It's coming soon, to a moving vehicle near you. 4G LTE is about to have a significant impact on the adoption of telematics services -- due to network stability and coverage. It's estimated that 76 percent of automotive industry executives expect all new vehicles to be 'telematics connected' by 2022.
4G Americas announced that there are currently 225 commercial LTE networks in 85 countries worldwide. Based on mobile network service provider commitments, that number will increase to more than 464 LTE networks in the coming years.
Particularly in the North American, LTE is becoming mainstream -- where coverage in the U.S. market is now nationwide.
"The U.S. has emerged as the worldwide leader in LTE connections and innovations are being developed to keep future LTE networks efficient, effective, fast and reliable," said Vicki Livingston, head of communications at 4G Americas.
But thus far, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) have taken a piecemeal approach to the connected car because of a lack of guaranteed connectivity. That will change. Many OEMs are already analyzing what 4G LTE will provide.
Why now? Because LTE makes internet connections more responsive, allowing for the transmission of large files and video content much more quickly than legacy 3G networks.
Meanwhile, 4G Americas has endorsed the upcoming Telematics Update conference, with Chris Pearson, President of 4G Americas, speaking and moderating a panel entitled, "The Passenger: Thinking Beyond the Driver."
Some OEMs are already on board with LTE, according to Telematics Update. For example, Toyota believes that planning for in-vehicle LTE connectivity will be the way forward, yet they maintain a hybridized approach.
Vendors want to experience how the LTE network performs when confronted with significant vehicle volume on the road. They need to know if it's possible to move applications fully into the cloud to be streamed, or if they should remain bound to smartphone connectivity through a tethered or embedded combination.
The ongoing debate with 'connected car' thought leaders will be the topic of discussion at the "Content & Apps for Automotive USA 2013" conference, held December 11-12 in San Francisco, California.