Full Speed Ahead: How The Car Of The Future Is Set To Change Society

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Looking to predict the future? Your car might hold the answers. Howard Blake, Chairman of Blake Holdings and avowed petrolhead, discusses how new automotive technologies are driving convergence.

Thought F1 was fast-paced? The speed of innovation in the automotive industry makes it look like a donkey cart race. The last few years have seen the development of disruptive new technologies that are set to change the face of society forever.

Ever since the first Ford Model T hit markets around the world, people have been obsessing about what the car of the future might look like. While the century since the Model T’s invention has brought plenty of changes to the automobile industry, the current crop of innovations represents a massive shift

At this year’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES), it became clear that the future of cars is less about horsepower and more about empowering drivers. Major motor manufacturers are seeking out ways to do this using connected technologies.

The car of the future will be smarter. It will be increasingly intuitive. It will be inter-connected. Imagine a world where cars are able to communicate with other cars, traffic lights, and parking bays. Imagine being able to access real-time updates on everything from the weather to the state of the road, all delivered straight to your dash

A car that can do all of the above has been the subject of science fiction for decades. It’s thanks to the increasing amount of digital convergence – wearables and smart devices in particular – that this is becoming a realistic option.

The data-driven vehicle

The journey towards the self-driving car often grabs the headlines at CES, but there’s a lot of juicy stuff outside the bubble of driverless vehicle technology. Many of this year’s most exciting reveals at CES spoke to the internet of things (IoT) and the potential of converged technologies to radically change the way we work, live and drive.

Take General Motors, which unveiled an app that allows your smartphone to interact with your vehicle. The app will allow drivers to start the car remotely, adjust the temperature and even park your vehicle automatically. None of these features are new in their own right, but the convergence aspect – having access to all of this from a single point – is groundbreaking

This is just the start. As these technologies mature, we should see a wider system of integration, encompassing cities, infrastructure, insurance, and even retail. Connected cars are set to deliver a never-before-seen array of digital possibilities.