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Ford takes FCC Chair for a spin in pitch to save connected cars

By Bloomberg, via IndustryWeek

Jun 19, 2019

Ford and other carmakers including BMW AG and Toyota Motor Corp., don’t want to lose the rights they gained in 1999 from the FCC for a system designed to link cars, roadside beacons and traffic lights into a seamless wireless communication web to avoid collisions and heed speed limits.

Yet after nearly two decades, deployments have been few. An Obama administration proposal to mandate the technology in new cars has been left to languish under the deregulatory agenda pursued by President Donald Trump. General Motors Co. introduced the first factory-equipped model, a Cadillac sedan, just two years ago. And in April, Toyota scrapped plans to equip its cars with the systems starting in 2021.

Now, after failing to deliver widespread breakthroughs, they’re at risk of losing those frequencies to Comcast Corp. and other cable companies that say they can use them to offer robust Wi-Fi links to subscribers.

That conversation has already kicked off a flurry of activity by stakeholders. A team at Ford Motor Co. gave Pai a ride in a specially outfitted F-150 pickup truck earlier this month. The idea was to demonstrate the technology that could, for example, warn of a scooter’s approach or judge when it’s safe to enter an intersection.

Read the full story, "Ford Takes Regulator for a Spin in Pitch to Save Connected Cars," at www.industryweek.com.

 

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