Integrated connected car module is scalable

Targeted at the global automotive industry, the Laird Modular Automotive Connectivity (MAX) module is believed to be the first fully integrated connected car platform.

The integrated and scalable module is for secure mobile connectivity and automotive Ethernet for reliable internet use inside and outside the vehicle.

Laird MAX has been introduced worldwide and brings together communications technologies, an open software concept, a Linux-based security module, and Laird’s integrated antenna system.

MAX enables a range of services for safety and comfort, explains Laird, from driver-assisted navigation, advanced diagnostics for maintenance, theft protection and over-the-air software updates that can be scaled to meet the needs of automakers and their customers.

Worldwide sales of connected cars are expected to reach 72.5 million in the next five years, according to industry analyst IHS Markit, with almost 70 per cent of all passenger vehicles sold around the globe will be exchanging data with external sources, bringing new services and new business models to bear in automotive markets by 2023.

The modularisation of MAX enables automakers to have a short time-to-market compared to tailor-made solutions, says Laird. It can be integrated into a Laird system solution, including control unit and antenna, and used for external service providers as the basis for a back-end connection or for app development.

Its scalability means it can cater for customers who only need networking for small batches.

Applications that can be implemented on MAX include internet gateway functionality, a remote diagnostic tool, a remote-control system, location functions, and driver statistics. It can be used to set up a wide range of services for OEMs, fleet operators and insurance companies.

MAX enables a connected vehicle to continuously and securely stream and share data with multiple wireless devices and applications inside and outside the vehicle’s immediate environment. It can serve as a communication basis for networked and autonomous vehicles in smart cities, as well as with trucks, fork-lifts or machines in networked logistics or for smart farming.

The use of custom features limits the number of components and their weight, to make MAX is environmentally-friendly, says Laird. By optimizing the energy management, the power consumption is reduced, which is a differentiation advantage especially for electric vehicles.

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