Networked cars, big opportunity
Historically automobiles have been a “self-contained” environment,
meaning interoperability and aftermarket add-ons have not been that
important and were a problem to be solved by the OEM companies. A
clear example is the integration of your mobile phone. Phone
integration migrated from proprietary custom installed systems to an
integrated Bluetooth system. Note that Bluetooth is an industry
standard that allowed automotive companies to provide interoperation
with any Bluetooth enabled mobile phone. Now we see additional
features such as voice recognition, wireless networking, and
passenger video systems added as not only aftermarket products, but
also included as optional features. And this trend is just starting.
Consider the electronics in today’s cars. Figure 3
summary of some of the electronic systems that are, or can be
monitored via an IVI system.
Figure 3: Networked automobile
Ethernet with AVB will allow interoperation of products that can be
used in a larger number of automobiles. So Ethernet solves two
problems. First, it simplifies the cars’ network communications, and
second, it increases the TAM for companies designing products for
the automotive market. It will be an evolution, not a revolution.
Ethernet will be adopted from focused niche applications, migrating
to parts of the vehicle network, to replacing existing IVI network
interfaces to critical, or under the hood, networked components.
This will be done with open alliances, IEEE standards,
intraoperative testing bodies like AVnu, and new standards such as
twisted pair gigabit Ethernet and validation of Ethernet from
integrated applications to OEM products.
So where is the V in AVB? It is in your car now or soon, and it will
evolve into more and more products as networked audio/video and
real-time systems come to market. The automotive market may well be
the leader in this new standards adoption, but other products are
being designed, and more will certainly follow. Have doubts about
Ethernet in automotive? Presentations were given at the second
annual Ethernet & IP @ Automotive Technology Day at University
of Applied Sciences Regensburg by BMW AG, Volkswagen, Jaguar Land
Rover, Toyota, and many others including a presentation by Steffen
Carlson and Valerie Maguire on the IEEE 802.3 Reduced Twisted Pair
Gigabit Ethernet working group. You can download presentations from
these as well as other presenters at http://www.ethernettechnologyday.com/pages/downloads.html
Simple economics will drive the V into your car, and will eventually
show up in many more products. Standards will evolve, more companies
will support the standards, and the IEEE standards to Ethernet will
continue to evolve and gain support.
John A. Swanson has been working in the IP business since 1990
when he joined Logic Automation/Modeling, which was later acquired
by Synopsys. John has worked in the design, verification,
integration and implementation aspects of complex IP in
engineering methodology, and business development and marketing.
He has been working on system-on-a-chip technologies and
methodologies for over ten years with Synopsys in a variety of
assignments. Currently he is the product line manager for the
DesignWare Ethernet family of Digital cores as well as JPEG, 1394
and the IP reuse tools. Prior to joining Synopsys he worked
for Amoco Oil Company designing wellhead automation and control
systems. He is an Honor graduate from DeVry Institute of
Technology where he completed his engineering degree with
Presidents List honors.