Standards. They provide rules, guidelines, or characteristics for activities or their results. They are said to make everyday life work.
On another level, consensus-based standards development through collaboration to solve industry challenges, ultimately help reduce time to market, promote innovation and technology advancement.
With respect to automated and connected transportation standards, technical standards are helping to do just that (see Automated and Connected Transportation Standards); for what was once just the stuff of sci-fi novels are now closer than ever to being part of everyday life – according to today’s headlines.
- Testing of autonomous vehicles is happening around the world – and on your city streets: Google is hiring people to sit in the company’s driverless cars as they go back and forth between destinations in Arizona.
- The USDoT‘s transportation secretary met earlier this month with the Smart City Challenge finalists. The winning city of the challenge will receive up to $40 million from the USDoT to help create a fully integrated, first-of-its-kind city that uses data, technology and creativity to tackle transportation challenges. Nearly all cities in the Challenge are exploring self-driving cars.
- By 2020, BI Intelligence estimates that 75% of cars shipped globally will be built with the necessary hardware to connect to the internet. (Although, a recent study by TNS/Bearing Point shows that while one-third of European car buyers consider connectivity important in their next car purchase, two in five current owners of connected cars don’t know they have such features already.)
These headlines may show how close autonomous vehicles are to becoming part of everyday life, others, however, seem to indicate the opposite. A March 2016 IEEE survey showed that 75% of US drivers fear self-driving cars, with top concerns being 1) the implementation of these vehicles into everyday traffic and 2) safety.
While standards play an important role in advancing technology, their role in helping gain customer confidence, and loyalty may be equally important in bringing autonomous vehicles to market.