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It’s a new digital age in business, with the Internet of Things (IoT) heralding transformative technology. Connections are being made every second – between businesses and customers, businesses and machinery, and customers and machinery. The potential for this kind of symbiotic information sharing is so great that industries are changing the way they think about their products and services. The great potential for the auto industry lies in the concept of the connected vehicle.

/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/cars_779903.jpgThe auto industry is currently addressing IoT-related issues, including:

  1. Sending and receiving data
  2. Storing Big Data in an economic manner
  3. Managing analytics and services for Big Data
  4. Creating new business models
  5. Building platforms as data and services marketplaces

And beyond this, it’s become necessary to differentiate your services – especially as a manufacturer. Bringing additional services to the table can give your business a whole new life.

Owners of corporate fleets, forklifts, farm equipment, and service trucks want to ensure that their vehicles are used in the most efficient and optimal manner possible. With so many vehicles and reports to manage, the utmost transparency is required – and this is the scenario in which the connected vehicle can make all the difference.

The connected vehicle as a sponge

We’re not talking about making machinery porous – we are referring to vehicles that can do far more than go straight ahead. Today’s vehicles have a 360-degree sense of the world around them and can absorb every bit of information about their surroundings – like whether the environment is pavement, soil, or a corn field. The connected vehicle doesn’t just deliver goods of value, it holds value intrinsically.

So how can these vehicles provide ROI? Let’s consider several vehicle types and the scenarios enabled when they are connected:

  • For company car fleets:
    • Increase cost savings for fuel, tires, service, and maintenance
    • Improve mobility mix for employees by understanding commuting habits
    • Gain insights into usage of cars as moving assets
  • For commercial fleets:
    • Optimize travel routes to any production site
    • Enhance navigation based on internal constraints such as gates and construction sites
  • For forklifts:
    • Achieve real-time visibility into the status of the forklift fleet
    • Increase maintenance and repair service-level efficiency as a commercial fleet operator
  • For agricultural equipment
    • Integrate data from various sources, delivered on one platform, centralizing the farmer’s concerns
    • Develop and deploy applications and services faster
    • Solid shared data platform for all business processes between OEMs, suppliers, and customers

Connecting the vehicle through the cloud

The connected vehicle is a dynamic concept with a broad variety of use cases. SAP HANA Cloud Platform provides a platform for any connected vehicle. The platform can be used to collect vehicle data, but more importantly, gain insights and take actions. By delivering the technology and the application foundation with our software as a starting point, the applications and services can be built on top of it.

For example, think about telematic sensor data. The data from vehicles is streamed in real time through mobile network connectivity to SAP HANA Cloud Platform. Once sensor data is in the SAP HANA platform, a complete spectrum of analytical processing can be executed. Take advantage of more advanced analytics that combine telematics with process and business data from production, supply chain, CRM, retail, warranty, or insurance back-end systems. Put the vehicle into business!

SAP is making use of its decades of application development history by delivering more than technology – we’re now delivering a business platform as a service upon which our customers can build and create apps. This offers our clients the ability to differentiate their services, better serve and understand their customers, and gain insights that spur innovation.

All these benefits extend beyond automotive – we see this as a multi-industry scenario extending to insurance and even farming.

Learn more about the IoT and other technology trends impacting the automotive industry at the Best Practices for Automotive on October 12-14, 2015 in Detroit, Mi. Download the conference brochure now.

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3 Comments

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  1. George Kappas

    What about autonomous cars, do you think it will ultimately become a reality? Having in mind the big impact it will impose to the insurance companies’ revenues!

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    1. Stephan Brand Post author

      Hi George, yes, this will become reality but in phases. Looking at the development cycles of the car manufacturers (5-6 years) and the fact that they release their major vehicle product lines now in 2015/2016, we should expect a lot of capabilities for highly/semi automated driving by 2020, than a next wave in 2025 and so son.

      It is also a question where it will be rolled out first: selected highways, new cities which are planned in a way to support new ways of transportations etc

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      1. George Kappas

        So you dont expect that Insurers will create obstacles one way or another? The more autonomous the cars, the less the accidents so even less the related revenues for them…

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