Now, that's interesting. Thanks for your quick response.
My understanding is that the eCall is a dormant system, only triggered when an accident occurs or by the driver pushing a button manually in the car.
The European Commission even said in a statement:
"It is not traceable and when there is no emergency (its normal operational status) it is not subject to any constant tracking. As it is not permanently connected to mobile networks, hackers cannot take control of it."
But now, thatt seems a tad too optimistic, doesn't it?
Yeah, this reminds me how I finally got a car with a CD player about the time music went to the MP3 generation. (My next car will have an iPhone dock!)
I underdstand reliability is a top concern for carmakers, there are few robust LTE chips on the market and not all areas have LTE servcies yet, but 2G? Holy crow, why not just release a carrier pidgeon from the trunk in the event of an accident ;-)
When consumer electroincs was my main beat at EE Times for a long time, I was always reminded that every penny counts. In other words, CE vendors will never go out of their way to add expensive chips inside their box, unless they are a real "game changer."
But now that I pursue the automotive beat, I am astounded to learn how these carmakers really ask for saving this penny here and that penny there. Wow, I had no idea!
Rick, you know what is really effective and unaffected by cellular reception issues? Rotary spark gap generators and as a bonus I am pretty sure Marconi's patents have expired. All we need is a hardened microcontroller to use the engines condenser to generate the requisit transmissions!
I don't necessarily see 2G as a problem. The built-in phone is intended to let the car make calls. The people in the car will likely have their own phones. Does the car need 3G for the sort of calls (like roadside assistance requests) that it may need to make?
And automakers aren't cheapskates - buyers are. The more expensive the components they put into cars, the higher the sticker price has to be, and price will be a factor in the purchase decision.
So for something like this, if lower end and therefore cheaper technology will meet the need, it's what will get used.
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