BMW, in collaboration with telematics service providers Connexis and WirelessCar, has developed both a new telematics framework and a technology-neutral telematics protocol to deliver over-the-air services in their vehicles, named NGTP. As someone of you might know, since 1997 BMW provided services such as Emergency Call, Breakdown Call, Concierge Service, Traffic Information, Google Send2Car, and the BMW Online telematics services portal.
More recently, the BMW ConnectedDrive system is being implemented across their models in Europe. What we learned recently is that the next generation BMW 3 Series, due to be released in 2012, will fully take advantage of the advanced technologies. Even more, the NGTP will be backwards compatible, allowing older and newer cars to take advantage of the improved telematics offerings.
Reasons for Developing NGTP
Historically, vehicle manufacturers have offered customers proprietary services and have been dependent on a single TSP for delivery of these services in a specific market. This supply chain inflexibility made it difficult for providers to gain economies of scale and advance their offerings.
A more open and standardized approach to delivering services has clear benefits for the marketplace, but previous standardization efforts focused on replacing existing protocols, rather than integrating them, which met barriers to adoption.
With the proliferation of new technologies (e.g., UMTS, WiFi, VoIP), it is likely that future in-vehicle devices will access services using multiple methods and technologies. BMW and its partners concluded that the telematics industry would greatly benefit from a technology-neutral protocol to expand the options for delivering services.
BMW, Connexis, and WirelessCar have brought their considerable experience together to develop a new protocol, NGTP, based on a standardized and highly flexible infrastructure.
If you would like to dig deeper in the technology behind NGTP, then I encourage you to take the time and read the www.ngtp.org website. Many interesting details are being revealed there.