Firms urge EU to ditch plans to endorse wifi for automated cars
Qualcomm, BMW, and Deutsche Telekom are facing off against car-makers including Volkswagen and Volvo over how cars talk to each other.
At issue are the rules of the road for future connected and automated cars in Europe, which will dictate how to send information between vehicles and infrastructure, such as making cars aware of other vehicles and relaying signals from traffic lights.
The European Parliament is to vote on draft rules by the European Commission that would endorse wifi technology pushed by VW, General Motors, and Volvo. BMW and other car and telecom firms are urging MEPs to scrap the rules, arguing the law would force them to make additional investments to fit a soon-to-be outdated technology, which offers poorer performance than cellular-based tech compatible with 5G networks.
"We are convinced that mandating wifi technology will cause significant delays to the European rollout of car-to-car and car-to-infrastructure communication," BMW CEO Harald Krueger and Deutsche Telekom CEO Timotheus Hoettges said in a letter to Germany's Transport Minister Andreas Scheuer.
Car and IT associations including 5GAA - which includes Qualcomm, Ford and Daimler as members - also called on the European Parliament and member states to reject the law.
Wifi cheerleaders - including Volkswagen and Renault- argue the industry needs clarity on what systems to use as soon as possible, and that it currently is the only proven technology.