Monday, December 29, 2014

Connected Vehicles @ CES

Check out the full article at Bloomberg. Microvision will be at CES in private suites.
Microvision will be providing an excellent solution to automakers for delivering information to drivers. are among the main attractions at the International CES that opens Jan. 6 featuring vehicles with touchscreen dashboards and others controlled by smartwatches. Fields is making a triumphant return as Ford’s chief executive officer, where he’ll deliver a speech about the dawn of the connected-car era. Daimler AG CEO Dieter Zetsche will be there, too, discussing the latest concept of a self-driving Mercedes-Benz. They join a record 10 automakers showing their wares on an exhibit space the size of three football fields. 
“CES has become a major launch point for a lot of the big automakers,” said Mark Boyadjis, technology analyst for researcher IHS in Minnetonka, Minnesota. “CES is a way for them to get on a global stage for technology.” 
Photographer: Jeff Kowalsky/Bloomberg
Mark Fields, President and Chief Executive Officer of Ford Motor Co.

Industry Trend 

Ford is not alone. This year, Volkswagen AG makes its debut at the show that also includes Toyota Motor Corp. (7203), General Motors Co., Hyundai Motor Co., Mazda Motor Corp., Audi, BMW and FCA US LLC, formerly known as Chrysler Group LLC. 
Bayerische Motoren Werke AG’s BMW, in its second year at CES, has a sprawling exhibit that includes a fleet of more than 100 cars and covers 57,475 square feet (5,300 square meters) of space just outside the Las Vegas Convention Center. Visteon Corp. (VC), a supplier of technology to car cockpits, doubled the size of its display, a gleaming silver and orange structure that houses three demonstrator vehicles and four private offices. 
The amount of exhibit space at CES dedicated to car technologies has almost doubled over the last five years to 165,000 square feet, according to Tara Dunion, a spokeswoman for the show. 
“When you look at who’s coming, with Mark Fields and Dieter Zetsche and all of us, it has become an auto show,” Tim Leuliette, Visteon’s CEO, said in an interview. “It’s reflective of the vehicle becoming a mobile device. Welcome to the new world.” 

Competing on Computing 

Drivers are demanding their cars keep them constantly connected like a smartphone on wheels. In-vehicle technology is the top selling point for 39 percent of car buyers, more than twice the 14 percent who care most about horsepower and handling, according to a survey last year from the Accenture consulting firm. The number of cars connected to the Internet worldwide will grow more than fourfold to 152 million by 2020 from 36 million today, according to IHS. 

Traditional Tech 

Even traditional technology exhibitors are getting on the automotive bandwagon. Nvidia Corp. (NVDA), a Santa Clara, California-based chipmaker for video games and personal computers, has converted three-quarters of its stand this year to automotive, including displaying a new roadster and an electric supercar. 
“Two years ago, our booth would have been filled with PCs and people playing video games,” said Danny Shapiro, senior director of Nvidia’s automotive business unit, which supplies processors to Audi, BMW and Tesla Motors Inc. “This year we made a strategic decision to shift the focus of the booth on automotive and de-prioritize some of the other things.” 
It’s a shift driven by dollars. The Consumer Electronics Association forecasts factory-installed vehicle technologies will increase 3 percent in 2015 to $11.3 billion. Nearly one-third of U.S. households now own a vehicle equipped with an electronic infotainment system, according to CEA. 
Many of those systems get their start in Vegas. CES, despite its setting on the Vegas Strip, has less glitz and more substance than typical auto shows, said Visteon’s Leuliette, who is booked solid with prospect meetings next week. 
“The Detroit auto show is a social event,” Leuliette said. “We’re making decisions in Vegas.” 

Closed-Door Meetings 

Typical of high rollers in Vegas, the big deals go down in private hotel suites far from the convention floor. In those closed-door meetings, technology suppliers show off their most futuristic wares to automakers intent on keeping the deals secret until the high-tech feature is ready for the road. 
To contact the reporter on this story: Keith Naughton in Dearborn, Michigan, at

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