You know a sector is hot when industry alliances start popping up. Barely a week after its announced acquisition of M2M firm Hughes Telematics
, Verizon announced it is teaming up with major automakers BMW, Honda, Hyundai, Kia and Toyota, in addition to MIT, to form the 4G Venture Forum for Connected Cars.
the 4G Venture Forum will focus on using 4G LTE to support connected cars accessing a wealth of cloud-based and mobile content for everything from safety to infotainment. The forum pledges to use open standards and accelerate 4G development across the auto industry, including OEMs, suppliers, device makers, app developers and content publishers.
Yankee Group Research VP Brian Partridge comments
“Verizon has had a busy week buying and partnering itself into the center of the U.S. connected car ecosystem. Verizon is deftly and aggressively positioning itself to monetize its investment in U.S. LTE coverage for years to come from both people and, ultimately, things such as cars. Native broadband Internet connectivity in automobiles will be disruptive to existing in-car entertainment options such as satellite radio but will also create new opportunities for in-car content and services, including new safety and convenience features. SiriusXM stands to lose the most, as native 4G connectivity opens the floodgates for streaming audio competition from the likes of Pandora. Yankee Group estimates there will be 22.74 million connected cars worldwide at the end of 2012, and 36.29 million in 2016, an annual growth rate (CAGR) of 12.4 percent, below the M2M industry average of 24.3 percent. This is due to the fact the majority of connected car growth is tied to new car sales, as car owners are less likely to opt for a retrofitted system that is not completely integrated with the design of their car.”