How can you use IoT in automotive?

Automotive is one of the industries that manage to showcase everything IoT is capable of. The connectivity of our vehicles has been increasing at an incredible pace and will continue to do so as the IoT-based innovations are developed.

When the IoT automotive advancements become commonplace, who will be the first to claim the driver’s seat as the industry leader? How will it change the way we approach daily commute and long-destination trips?

In this post, we’ll break down what kind of change the Internet of Things enables as well as potential challenges the industry is yet to face as cars become software-driven.

Table of Contents

  1. IoT in the Automotive Industry: Forecast

  2. Benefits of IoT Implementation in The Automotive Industry

  3. IoT Automotive Industry - Real Life Applications

  4. Challenges of IoT in the Automotive Industry

  5. Conclusion

IoT in the Automotive Industry: Forecast

The road for IoT in the automotive industry is wide open. In 2019, it’s yet to early to assess the fruit of IoT implementation. However, when it comes to forecasting the technology’s adoption progress, here’s what statistics have to say.

  • With the Internet of Things, automotive will make billions in the next 5 years. According to Statista, up to 2025, IoT will be able to generate 23.6 billion dollars.

  • Deloitte calculated that, in the last six years, the automotive industry’s IoT adoption grew at a 37X rate.

  • The automotive industry is the leader in the number of projects and the amount of money generated by IoT adoption, according to Statista.

IoT in automotive industry

Benefits of IoT Implementation in The Automotive Industry

The combination of the opportunities that Internet of Things offers along with the hardware power provided by vehicles is impressive. The benefits of IoT adoption in the automotive industry include increasing the driver’s safety, personalizing experiences inside the vehicle and out, protect cars from theft and make them easier to track.

1. Improves control over driving

With IoT, drivers will be able to track their health as well as the status of the vehicle during driving, create positive driving habits and hold on to them. Thanks to On-Board Diagnostics solutions, you’ll be able to collect data from vehicle doors, windows, engine, and other elements of the car. It will be processed and stored as a comprehensive report with the list of your driving habits. The Internet of Things will be able to alert a driver if he’s over-accelerating, speeding, not using the seatbelt, or is about to hit a sharp corner.

2. Improves traffic management

Cities with a high number of drivers (Washington, DC, Los Angeles, etc.) have to deal with the traffic issue.

The Internet of Things is capable of improving traffic management by using sensors to control the traffic load in real time.

This way, drivers can improve trip planning and the authorities will have data on the busiest areas in the city.

Using IoT for traffic management will help to reduce the number of car accidents and create a less polluted environment in highly populated areas.

3. A possibility to implement value-added services

IoT integration will allow drivers to make the driving process more meaningful and productive. The following are the main types of value-added services the Internet of Things can provide drivers with:

  • Improved navigation. The Internet of Things can improve the map accuracy of existing navigators, add a traffic status tracker based on V2V (vehicle to vehicle) technology, offering dining recommendations as well as the local speed limits.

  • Hands-free driving. IoT-empowered infotainment platforms allow drivers to steer IoT car using voice commands or buttons.

  • Improved in-vehicle entertainment. IoT will become the cornerstone of new-generation musical solutions navigated by voice commands, scan a driver’s preferences and learn from them.

4. Reduced tracking and transportation cost for commercial vehicle owners

Fleet management is also likely to benefit from IoT adoption. The Internet of Things will allow vehicle managers to track the entire fleet in real time, report on drivers’ behavior, and ensure the delivery process is moving according to a manager’s plan.

The Internet of Things will also be able to control the contents of commercial vehicles. A set of sensors placed inside the vehicle will be able to collect the environmental data that’ll allow managers to ensure that the products a fleet delivers are stored in appropriate conditions.

5. User-based insurance

Using the Internet of Things, insurance companies will be able to adjust their policies based on a user’s emotional condition as well as his usual driving behavior. User-based insurance platforms will allow tracking the driver’s physical data during driving, his state of mind, and other psychographic factors.

IoT in automotive

IoT Automotive Industry - Real Life Applications

While there’s still a long road ahead of the Internet of Things, there have already been more than a few IoT implementations in the industry. Let’s take a look at the projects that have already been considered successful.

1. Vehicle tracking

IoT offers immense opportunities for vehicle tracking. OBD sensors along with the GPS technology will collect the location data from inside the vehicle. All the information will be sent and processed in the cloud gateway so that a fleet manager can track the position of the vehicle and be alerted in case of safety issues.

There’s a wide range of IoT-based tracking devices. A tracking device developed by AT&T, for instance, provides developers with real-time fleet visibility and protects vehicles from theft.

2. V2X technology

V2X is an IoT-based car communication system that allows the vehicle to collect real-time insights about everything around it. The technology allows drivers to have better control over their surroundings. As a result, the following opportunities have been created:

  • Real-time notifications about the proximity of parking lots and charging stands;

  • Sensor- and cloud-based communication between vehicles;

  • Road hazard warnings from several kilometers ahead;

  • Real-time traffic warnings.

General Motors Co, for instance, has already embraced V2X technology and tested it on public roads in Shanghai. Ford has made an announcement to enhance all car models with V2X by the end of the year.

3. In-vehicle infotainment

The leading companies in terms of IoT adoption have already started implementing their infotainment services into connected cars. Google, for instance, has already integrated Maps, Play Store, and Assistant into smart vehicles. Similarly, Apple has already started the implementation of Apple CarPlay.

By 'IoT-connecting' a smartphone to a vehicle, drivers will be able to spend their commuting hours more productively. With connected infotainment platforms, you’ll be able to browse through websites on the go, get new information on demand without losing concentration on the road.

4. Predictive maintenance

Predictive maintenance, enabled by IoT adoption, will allow drivers to improve vehicle maintenance and increase the longevity of the car. It consists of three main pillars:

  • Data gathering. IoT sensors collect real-time insights that’ll help system to calculate the “time-to-failure” estimate.

  • Prediction. The collected data is transformed into a system of engineering values used in a prediction model.

  • Reaction. Based on the insights collected after the prediction stage, the maintenance system offers insights on how the overall state of the vehicle can be improved.

The examples of predictive maintenance systems include tools developed by Siemens and GE.

5. Safety improvement

IoT sensors can assist drivers in blind spot detection, control parking, check the rear view and the vehicles in proximity. Thanks to communication tools with other drivers, collisions can be predicted and prevented. IoT allows parents to control kids’ driving habits, prevent them from overspeeding, etc.

The practical examples of using IoT for safety improvement are BMW’s Assistant, Chevrolet’s Teen Driver Technology.

Automotive IoT

Challenges of IoT in the Automotive Industry

As IoT-connectivity in the automotive picks up its pace, there are risks that come along. The industry will have to face challenges created by the adoption of new technologies and ensure that software can’t ‘surpass’ the driver in the decision-making process.

  • Battery and bandwidth consumption - to create a comfortable bidirectional communication flow between vehicles, one needs open sockets - that results in a bandwidth consumption increase. Adopting M2M messaging protocols is a potential way to limit the bandwidth usage without limiting the functionality of the Internet of Things.

  • Security management - as the Internet of Things become commonplace in the automotive, the issue of protecting vehicles from hacking will arise. AES and SSL encryption as well as giving a developer a possibility to either grant or deny access to the vehicle are a few potential fixes for the problem.

  • Signaling quality. Tunnels, routes in low proximity from populated centers are all subjective to the low quality of network connectivity. In these areas, getting real-time insights from IoT platforms will be impossible.

  • Maintenance cost. Adding IoT platforms to a vehicle creates additional systems that are at risk of malfunctioning. Fixing software bugs will add to the overall maintenance cost. The issue, however, will dissolve as the technology spreads further.


The Internet of Things is changing the face of the automotive industry, increasing its controllability and safety. A variety of connected solutions will make driving easier, more productive, and enjoyable. Finally, IoT adoption can help manufacturers reduce the negative environmental impact vehicles are capable of creating.

In case you’re looking forward to developing an IoT solution for the automotive industry, contact the team at Indeema. We provide SMEs and global businesses with innovative solutions for predictive management, data monitoring, and the automation of routine tasks.

Get to know the team better by taking a look at our projects. To discuss the development of your own idea, contact us - we’ll be happy to get on board.

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