Blockchain Driving the Future of Autonomous Cars

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Written by
Shivani Tripathi
Published on
December 20, 2022


The automotive sector has been taking giant leaps in bringing futuristic features and technology to the end user.

Be it the shift from fuel to hybrid or fully-electric vehicles or the progress being made in the autonomous vehicle segment, carmakers are realizing that there is enormous potential when they amalgamate technology with robust automotive engineering.

Blockchain Solutions
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Blockchain solutions are the newest focus in this car technology revolution and have a vast untapped potential that the automotive industry is just beginning to realize.

In the context of connected cars, blockchain can be used to improve data security, enable autonomous driving, and facilitate the creation of new business models.

As this industry evolves, the future of IoT-connected vehicles looks promising, and there are significant benefits to adopting blockchain for autonomous and connected cars.

Here is a brief analysis of the future of autonomous IoT-connected vehicles.

Understanding Connected Vehicle Technology

Before we get into how we can use IoT-connected vehicles in the future, let us first understand what connected and automated vehicles are all about.

Connected vehicles are cars that are enabled with internal and external software, sensors, and IoT devices that can help them communicate with other applications, services, or technologies through WiFi, BlueTooth, 4G/5G networks, and other mechanisms.

Having vehicles connected and transmitting information easily with other devices enables accurate and real-time sharing of vehicle information that can help create better driving experiences.

Using this technology and connectivity to its advantage, automated or self-driving cars use ultrasonic sensors, GPS signals, radar, cameras, short-range radio, and other technologies to communicate and drive the vehicle.

This can be seen in today’s vehicles in the form of automatic braking, parking assistance, adaptive cruise control, lane assist, and other features. The future will be all about driverless cars which can perform all driving operations without requiring human intervention and is seen as the future of vehicles.

How Can Blockchain Revolutionize Connected and Automated Cars

Here are some of the benefits of the use of blockchain in the future of connected cars:

Create Digital Footprint for Each Vehicle Using Smart Contracts

When it comes to vehicle sales and ownership history, tracking this data using current manual and limited electronic entries is extremely difficult.

To solve this, a blockchain solution can be used in IoT-connected cars to store, update, and verify information about the vehicle. This connected ledger can be shared among different authorized entities such as car dealers, independent repair shops, and car manufacturers.

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Having a tamperproof and open ledger or smart contract ensures that both the customer and the dealer get complete information and can get accurate details of the vehicle to make any buy or sell decisions, avoiding any inconvenience in the future.

Easier Vehicle Recalls and Supply Chain Traceability

As per data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), over 1000 safety recalls involving 35 million vehicles and equipment were done in 2021.

This was due to major vehicle concerns like airbags, software and electronics, steering and suspension, tires, and other safety concerns.

The recall process is often time-consuming and complex, given that customer data on the particular version or model of the car is often not easily available to the manufacturers.

IoT-connected vehicles can make this process hassle-free and a lot easier since information like car details, CO2 emission levels, warranty, and other details can be collected automatically and stored on the blockchain, making it tamperproof.

Facilitate Safer In-Car Payments

Blockchain can also facilitate the creation of new business models in the connected car industry. For example, car-sharing platforms can use blockchain to track the use of shared vehicles and facilitate the payment process between renters and owners.

Similarly, blockchain can be used to enable the creation of decentralized ride-hailing platforms, allowing drivers and riders to connect directly without the need for a central authority.

Improved Claim and Insurance Processing

Blockchain solutions like a shared ledger may also be utilized to establish liability in the event of an accident.

By automatically filling out a claim and transmitting the information to the insurance company via smart contracts, IoT-connected vehicles with blockchain contracts simplify and speed up the claiming and insurance procedures.

Furthermore, crucial driver information like braking patterns, speed, or other driving parameters can be utilized to detect fraud or give personalized insurance rates based on the driver's previous history and driver ratings. 

Fraud Prevention and Easy Vehicle Ownership Transfer

Connected cars generate a large amount of data, including location data, driving patterns, and maintenance records.

Blockchain solutions can be used to store this data securely and share it with authorized parties, such as car manufacturers, insurers, and service providers.

By using blockchain, data can be stored in a decentralized manner, making it less vulnerable to tampering or hacking.

Future Smart Cities and Autonomous Driving

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IoT-connected vehicles can also be used to enable autonomous driving by creating a secure and decentralized network for the exchange of data between connected cars and infrastructure.

For example, blockchain can facilitate communication between self-driving cars and traffic lights, helping them navigate safely and efficiently.

The Bottom Line

In conclusion, blockchain solutions have the potential to bring significant benefits to the connected car industry, including improved data security, the enabling of autonomous driving, and the creation of new business models.

As the adoption of IoT-connected vehicles continues to grow, we can expect to see more blockchain applications in this space.

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