It’s been nearly a century since the automobile industry received public backlash for introducing a car with a radio; two decades since General Motors introduced OnStar, the first automotive telematics system; and a decade since BMW offered the first in-vehicle Apple iPod connectivity. While these developments were disruptive during their respective times, it’s the pace and momentum of technology innovation within the last 10 years that is changing the way cars are conceived, designed, manufactured, serviced and driven.
With all the excitement of autonomous driving and IoT, it is easy to forget there are still some significant challenges and hurdles that as a society must be overcome. Under policies, there are legal aspects to consider as well as regulations for insurance companies. From an international standpoint, we can expect that the worldwide governments will work on regulations for self-driving cars in their countries. For example, the G7 Ministers of Transportation have discussed this topic and they will do it again. From a local standpoint, DMVs of multiple states have already began to discuss self-driving regulations.
Given how quickly autonomous driving technology is coming, we need to become more aggressive with policies in order to help protect people and save lives. It took over 10 years for the US to mandate backup cameras in new vehicles. With the introduction of more technology for autonomous driving there is the expectation that safety hazards like backing up would be reduced. This type of lag between introduction and mandate will only increase the challenges we see as autonomous driving comes online.
As a leader in the semiconductor industry and with a position of more than 38% of overall memory component share (Gartner 2016) in automotive, Micron produces the DRAM (volatile memory that loses data when power is removed from the device), NAND and NOR Flash (Non-Volatile memory retains data when power is removed from the device) that provide storage and computation power for everything from entry level radio systems to advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) which will soon help to enable autonomous driving. With over 25 years of experience building devices specifically designed for the automotive industry, Micron is here to help guide this process.