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Meet the car that knows where it's going

The next generation of cars will ultimately “talk” to each other, making driving safer.

Meet the car that knows where it's going

Your Telstra mobile device may soon be the key to your driving future.

California-based Tesla has just introduced its $95,500+ four-door Model S electric car to Australia. It is powered by a rear-mounted electric motor fed by a lithium-ion battery that travels up to 502km. Inside every element of the car’s operation is at the driver’s fingertips thanks to a 17 inch touch screen, which runs everything from the air-suspension to the sun roof.

“Drivers and passengers will be able to stream music, pull up high-detail maps and navigation and access near real-time traffic updates – all made possible by Telstra’s SIM card,” said executive director, Telstra mobile, John Chambers.

Remote control

But that’s just the start. Owners will be able to check on the health of their vehicle – the amount of electric charge remaining, for example – as well as turn on the air-conditioning and even unlock doors remotely with just a smartphone app.

“Technology is becoming top of mind for Australians choosing new cars, and by 2025 we expect 90 per cent of new vehicles sold in Australia will come ready to connect to a mobile network.”

– John Chambers, executive director, Telstra mobile

Data generated by the car will also be available to Tesla engineers remotely, so that if an owner feels something is wrong, checks can be made and solutions found without the hassle of waiting for mechanics to examine the car physically.

Bells and whistles

In coming decades this kind of technology will become more pervasive and eventually all cars will be able to communicate with each other, as well as with roadside infrastructure and even the appliances in your house, through mobile networks. For example, you may decide to turn on the air-conditioning in your home and a few lights to make it comfortable and inviting when you return. All this can be easily done via your car interface.

If business is your pleasure, your car may be able to scan the route ahead to take information on traffic flow and hold-ups into account and estimate your time of arrival.

The car may even check your diary and offer to email meeting participants to inform them if you look like being delayed – such is the breadth of possibilities with the advent of the connected car.

Gaining traction

“Increasingly, technology is becoming top of mind for Australians choosing new cars, and by 2025 we expect 90 per cent of new vehicles sold in Australia will come ready to connect to a mobile network,” Chambers said.

Telstra is an ideal partner for car companies as its mobile network covers more than 2.3 million square kilometres, the largest mobile network in Australia, including 8300 km of highways not covered by any other mobile network.

Machine-to-machine technology provided by Telstra enables:
  • Connectivity between the Tesla car and its surrounding environment
  • Music streaming, high-detail maps and traffic updates
  • Climate controls and door locks via an app
  • Access to data about the car’s functions over the network – to help with repairs

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