Nokia and Japanese telecom company KDDI have successfully demonstrated the use of LTE in Japan to deliver cost-efficient, low-latency connectivity for vehicles. The trials were conducted by Nokia and KDDI at a rural location on the Japanese island of Hokkaido.
The trials are the first in the world to use LTE broadcast, implementing the evolved Multimedia Broadcast Multicast Service standard in two connected car applications, and demonstrating the potential of cellular technology to enable fully automated driving in the future.
"We are pleased to work with Nokia to demonstrate our leadership in the delivery of mobile networks for IoT and connected car communications,” said Mr. Munefumi Tsurusawa, Ph.D, General Manager, Connected Vehicle Technology Department, Technical Planning Division at KDDI Corporation. “This is an important trial showing how the automotive industry can leverage cellular technology to enhance safety of connect vehicles on the roads."
Vehicle-to-Everything (V2X) technology is designed to connect vehicles to each other, to communications network infrastructure, and to roadside sensors, including connectivity to traffic lights, radar and other functions. The proof-of-concept trials in Japan, Nokia and KDDI focused on vehicle to network use case and used non-integrated systems in cars interacting with sensors via the Nokia Multi-access Edge Computing (MEC) platform, which enables significantly reduced network latency.
"Nokia has a comprehensive solution package for V2X based on its MEC platform and eMBMS hotspot solution aiming to cost-effectively accelerate the adoption of vehicle-to-everything communication,” said Uwe Puetzschler, head of Car2X at Nokia. “While manual intervention was used in the proof-of-concept trials, a clear evolution path to 5G will enable operators such as KDDI to support the widespread adoption of automated vehicles."
The Nokia evolved Multimedia Broadcast Multicast service (eMBMS) hotspot solution, allows data to be sent once to many users simultaneously. Used in the trial it allowed real-time information to be shared with multiple vehicles to cost-effectively enable awareness and road safety. The companies compared the efficiency of using LTE broadcast to the one-to-one communication enabled by LTE unicast, in two connected car applications:
- Vehicle-to-network-to-vehicle (V2N2V) - in which cars maintained constant contact with the MEC system, sending real-time location, direction and speed data to roadside sensors. In an emergency situation, the driver can alert the application, with information distributed to other vehicles using eMBMS.
- Network Real-Time Kinematic (network RTK) -trial of LTE to enhance fully automated in-vehicle navigation. It showed how eMBMS could more cost-efficiently use existing geo-location systems to communicate to many vehicles in real-time and ensure accurate navigation.