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Orange helps Renault develop LTE apps for cars

In-vehicle apps set to boom

Operator group Orange has embarked on a research project with French car manufacturer Renault to test uses of LTE technology in connected cars.

Orange has rolled out LTE connectivity at Renault’s research and testing facilities as the two firms aim to test uses cases that will be made possible by high speed internet connectivity in vehicles. They cited cases such as virtual office, cloud gaming and in-car video conferencing as possible apps for the future.

The two firms are undertaking initial testing on Renault’s Next Two prototype car, which is based on its electric car model, the Renault ZOE.

“This partnership is an example of an effective working relationship between two very different worlds,” said Rémi Bastien, head of engineering innovation at Renault. “We were able to benefit ahead of time from a high-speed LTE network and from Orange’s expertise, with an opportunity to take advantage of the network for our prototype of the connected vehicle of the future.”

Nathalie Leboucher, head of the Smart Cities program at Orange, added: “Connected cars with communications services make travelling more efficient, and this is a major development priority in Orange’s strategy.”

The LTE World Summit, the premier 4G event for the telecoms industry, is taking place on the 23rd-26th June 2014, at the Amsterdam RAI, Netherlands. Click here to download a brochure for the event.

Renault already provides in car connectivity through its R-Link service, which provides drivers with an integrated, connected tablet device. It features nearly 100 apps, the car manufacturer said. Orange Business Services supplies the SIM M2M cards in R-Link cars.

Car manufacturers have been keen to capitalise on the connected car opportunity in recent times. Last month, Japan’s Nissan announced that it has begun rolling out its NissanConnect Apps service globally, a connected car platform based on Airbiquity’s smartphone app integration tools and its private cloud solution.

Renault in carAnd in October, Mercedes-Benz revealed the progress that it has made with its driverless technology by taking its S500 Intelligent Drive concept car on a 100km trip in the South of Germany.  Meanwhile, AT&T opened an innovation centre in Atlanta in August, focused on the digital life and connected car sectors. And earlier this month, the UK government pledged to make the nation a centre for the testing and development of driverless cars.


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