This sounds unbelievable but it’s proven that Internet connected cars fitted with entertainment, safety and navigation features in a traffic jam will cause dangerous data entanglement. A study published on Thursday by Machina Research discovered that by 2024 mobile networks will see machine-to-machine connections jump 10-fold to 2.3 billion from 250 million in 2014 and half of the links will be automotive. Many vehicles by 2020 will have wireless network connection or more than a quarter of a billion connected vehicles according to a forecast from technology research firm Gartner.
Attacks in cellular data demand will be caused by cars that have Wi-Fi connections onboard since drivers will be on the look out for alternative routes due to heavy traffic. The study also provides that car navigation and collision detection systems that rely on local networks to identify obstacles could be strained if they are not carefully designed and regulated. The dangerous scenarios can possibly mount over the next decade but they can be prevented if network operators pay more attention to managing surging, unpredictable data demands in congested areas and device makers do more to ensure their products do not interfere with other network users.
The founder and chief executive of Machina, a British market research firm specializing in machine-to-machine data communications Matt Hatton had this to say about peak traffic, “in terms of overall data volumes, Internet connected cars don’t present much of a problem but network resource management is not based on total traffic volume, its based on particular cell sites during peak times of network use.” Machina estimates peak traffic in rush hour could double in the immediate vicinity of congested areas due to the electronics on board connected cars.
Phone users in densely populated areas will experience a drop in data connections hence 4G data connections drop to slower 3G or even 2G connections capable only of limited data transfers. Normally phones make high demand on a network when downloading a video, updating email or making a call leading to a multiplication of network congestion, this scenario will be experienced when drivers converge in road traffic. Matt Hatton said, “Internet Connected cars, as with other M2M devices don’t behave like smartphones.”
The Machina report was sponsored by TEOCO, a Fairfax, Virginia-based provider of network management services to major telecom network operators worldwide.