BlueLink is an innovative telematics technology that combines safety, service and infotainment into a complete package. Puneet Anand, senior general manager (marketing) and group head at Hyundai Motor India Ltd, discusses the technology, its features, connectivity options and its role in connected cars with Deepshikha Shukla
Q. What defines a connected car?
A. A connected car is one that has an Internet connection, usually via a wireless local area network, that allows it to share Internet access and data with other devices inside and outside the car.
A connected vehicle primarily focuses on safety, security, remote access, vehicle relationship management, location-based services and alert services. For example, its sat-nav system may have a traffic monitoring feature that can alert the driver if there is a holdup on the route and offer an alternative to avoid it.
Q. When we talk about connected cars, why is the focus primarily on millennials?
A. Millennials are tech-savvy and always like to be connected. They are aspirational, love to explore new terrains and places, do not compromise on lifestyle and style statement.
Hyundai has launched India’s first smart connected SUV, VENUE, with advanced BlueLink connectivity technology. With this connected technology, it instills confidence and security, and delivers the promise of surrounding to its passengers with advanced active safety features. It offers users control of their vehicle even when they are away from it.
Q. Please tell us about BlueLink.
A. BlueLink has an inbuilt, tamper-proof device powered by eSIM and a cloud-based voice recognition platform from Global AI. The device projects real-time traffic navigation and live local search in collaboration with a global map company.
The device’s interactive voice-recognition feature and its ability to catch any local English accent has been developed specifically for customers from different regions in India.
BlueLink provides safety features such as vehicle theft tracking and immobilisation for recovery of stolen vehicles.
Remote control functions include engine start/stop, climate control, door lock/unlock, horn honk and light and vehicle status.
Q. Since network bandwidth is an issue in Tier II and III regions, how can a connected car ensure complete peace of mind for its customers?
A. Connected technologies are developed and rigorously tested keeping in mind customers’ day-to-day needs, challenges faced on roads, and their need for safety of self and that of the vehicle.
We have crafted our technology keeping the Indian consumer and demographics in mind. For example, to get maximum bandwidth even in low connectivity areas, we have provided a roof antenna on the car for maximum coverage.
Q. What is the current market share of connected cars in India? What is your contribution to it?
A. Expansion of Internet coverage via wired and wireless network infrastructure, ubiquity of smartphones, emergence of the Internet of Things (IoT) along with societal demand for connected driving experience are transforming the transportation sector in India.
The connected vehicle market in India is expected to witness a CAGR of 12.9 per cent, and reach a revenue of US$ 1803.9 million by 2024. This growth can be accounted to numerous factors such as automotive industry embracing data-centric business models, consumer demand for digitalised and connected driving experience, and government and regulatory push for the expansion of smart vehicles.
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