Blockchain in the automotive industry

Blockchain in automotive software engineering services has newfound applicabilities. Even though few players are adopting it yet, the industry seems to embrace it gradually but confidently.

Remember when almost every headline wrote bitcoin?

This made room for another concept in the public mentality – blockchain. Since then, the two seemingly interconnected terms separated. Today its applicability in different domains is a priority for many businesses. This is also the case in the automotive industry.

Blockchain and cryptocurrencies are no longer isolated concepts trying to get into the spotlight. Also, their technical and economic value gets more recognized every day by companies developing new solutions for various problems. With its help, they are improving existing technologies or are simply investing in them as a better option for stocks and bonds.

“First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win” Mahatma Gandhi

Even if we are still in an early adoption stage with blockchain and cryptocurrencies, these concepts started a real debate with many influent people, governments, and companies trying to either support it or ban it. On the financial side, this had a serious influence on cryptocurrencies, creating volatility in the market. However, on the tech side, things advanced gradually with companies starting to implement blockchain solutions to their existing products.

Views on blockchain

“We have elected to put our money and faith in a mathematical framework that is free of politics and human error.”

Tyler Winklevoss, Co-creator of Facebook

“Cryptography shifts the balance of power from those with a monopoly on violence to those who comprehend mathematics and security design.”

Jacob Appelbaum, activist and core member of the Tor project

“Whereas most technologies tend to automate workers on the periphery doing menial tasks, blockchains automate away the centre. Instead of putting the taxi driver out of a job, blockchain puts Uber out of a job and lets the taxi drivers work with the customer directly.”

Vitalik Buterin, co-founder of Ethereum and Bitcoin Magazine

Blockchain in automotive – players involved in adopting 

As we focus on the automotive sector, I will give some examples of companies and brands in this area. These are actively developing blockchain solutions for securing, optimizing and facilitating a better and safer environment for drivers.

BMW – Founding member of MOBI and exploring car mileage tracking with the new technology.

Renault – also co-founder of MOBI and teamed with Microsoft and VISEO to create the first-ever digital car maintenance book prototype.

Ford – Use of blockchain to let cars on the road communicate with each other and reduce traffic.

GM – Co-founded MOBI, a research group exploring the use of blockchain in systems that could make transportation safer, more affordable, and more widely accessible.

Daimler – Issued its first blockchain bond on a private version of Ethereum blockchain.

Toyota – Exploring the new technology for the development of driverless cars.

Porsche – Locking and unlocking the vehicle via an app, temporary access authorizations and new business models based on encrypted data logging.

Possible use cases of blockchain in automotive engineering

Given the unique features of the technology, like enhanced security, immutability and decentralization, here are some automotive areas where it could be applied.

  • Unlock vehicle secure with blockchain app
  • Traceability of vehicles spare parts
  • Car repair and maintenance history
  • Secure and automatically pay for road fees
  • Smart contracts use in insurance policies claim
  • Smart contracts used between companies secure and private
  • Rewards on blockchain for car data sharing for other companies` statistics
  • Car rentals through smart contracts eliminating intermediaries
  • Securing, storing and transferring smart cars data
  • Secure data transfer and sharing

According to an IBM report, 62% of surveyed auto executives say blockchain will be a disruptive force in the automotive industry within three years. Also, 54% of surveyed executives expect new business models to influence investments in blockchain and 54% of auto pioneers will implement their first commercial blockchain network at scale within the next three years. And that’s huge for the automotive industry and blockchain adoption.

Of course, it is not just automotive related, but giants like Microsoft, Google, Deloitte, and even Facebook are offering blockchain services or they study applications based on blockchain.

Blockchain is here to stay

Tech or money, blockchain, and cryptocurrencies are here to stay. They have the potential to change many aspects of today’s interaction with technology and financial systems.

The automotive industry is still in its incipient stage of developing and integrating blockchain solutions. Leading automotive companies are experimenting with blockchain for an easier and more secure way to drive and interact with automobiles. Therefore, this brought its own benefits to the IT offshore markets like software development in Romania.

Nonetheless, taking into consideration the growing number of companies that started to develop and integrate blockchain I can only assume the improvements brought to this industry will be major.

I’m excited to see what will happen.

About the author: Cristi Bâlc, is an automotive engineer, leading its team in AROBS.

Find out more about what we do when it comes to automotive engineering, here.

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