Connected cars: February 2015 month in the review. What you may have missed

You probably don’t have all the time in the world to read every piece of news related to the connected cars industry or to self-driving cars.

That’s why I started this series of Month in the Review articles, where I’ll be listing fresh news that was showcased in the previous month. I’m excited to share with you these news stories, so let’s begin.

Business Insider made a connected cars market report

In this report, Business Insider focused on finding out what are consumers’ attitude towards the services provided by connected cars, what’s their favorite method of payment, and how these services could impact self-driving cars.

The report shows that today connected safety features, such as avoiding collisions or alerting drivers about road conditions, bring the biggest revenue, which is $13 billion. Nevertheless, driver assistance will be in the first place in 2017.

Even though it seems that everyone and his dog is talking about connected cars, the report also shows that almost 80% of consumers have never heard of this term or know very little about it.

It seem that consumers need more detailed explanation about this industry.

A 14-year-old hacked a connected car

Yes, you read that right. When I saw this news, I knew I had to share it with you.

The media has been talking for some time now about the fact that connected cars can be easily hacked, but no one had actually managed to prove it. Until now.

A 14 year old boy, who had $15 worth of electronics bought from RadioShack, managed to unlock and start a connected car, he managed to start music in the car from his mobile phone. Luckily, the brand of the car was not revealed, but sources say that it was a big one.

According to Forbes, “the hack was part of a cyber security competition run by nonprofit research and development organization Battelle”.

This is a huge pivotal moment for car manufacturers that invest in connected cars, and they should consider investing more in creating smart cars that are completely hacker-proof.

Volvo has great ambitions

Car manufacturers, along with Google, and more recently Apple, are racing to be the first ones to release an autonomous vehicle on the market.

Volvo’s plan is to have 100 self-driving cars by 2017, which will be used by regular car owners. This is part of the company’s pilot program, which will take place in Gothenburg, Sweden.

The city approved this pilot program. Drivers will be able to test the car on a selection of public streets. Volvo is confident that the autopilot system is more reliable than a driver in emergency situations.

Check out the video below to find out more about this pilot program.

Is Apple working on a self-driving car?

There’s been a lot of debate during the beginning of February that started from a mysterious van that was spotted driving around San Francisco.

What raised these suspicions, you would ask. People are used to seeing Google’s cars driving around, but no one expected to see a van registered to Apple.

The van has a four camera mount rig attached its roof. According to Business Insider, the car could be cruising around because of two things: it’s either testing a secret self-driving car project, or it is used to improve their maps, which they clearly need.

Apple doesn’t have a license to test self-driving cars, but the media is not yet dismissing that idea, not the fact that they could be working on a Google Street View competitor.

Time will tell, I guess.

That’s all for now

This was some of the most relevant news that for the month of February. What are you most excited about? Have I missed something important related to connected cars or autonomous vehicles? Let me know down in the comments.

Philipp Kandal