Mobile networks are comparable to traffic jams. Have you ever been in a traffic jam? They aren’t fun. You stop and go, sometimes at a crawl, get easily bored and stress out wondering if it’s going to make you late. During rush hour times, it’s a given that roads will be congested and you may end up sitting around for a long time.
However, as the connected car industry expands, in addition to our traditional highways grinding to a halt, our mobile networks may do the same without some serious technological precautions. Networks need to change and upgrade their entire infrastructure in order to accommodate the ensuing surge of connectivity in cars.
[Photo Credits: Hans Poldoja’s Flickr]
According to Machina Research, mobile networks will be overloaded and cause a 97% increase in data traffic in the coming ten years. The overload will primarily initiate from the programming included in complicated mapping and entertainment systems.
In addition to this, grave complications are predicted for machine to machine communications where appliances and other objects need Internet connectivity in order to function properly.
It’s not data that experts predict will be the problem. It’s the fact that they’ll be using the Internet sporadically throughout the day, quite heavily during certain times and certain locations. Right now, our technology cannot handle these “sporadic” periods so further development needs to happen so that the Internet can handle these surges.
Machina Research predicted that there will be 2.3 billion connections by 2024. Even though it’s not a high percentage increase, the increase does in fact put a heavy load on certain bits of specific networks and, if not improved, could cause crashes, malfunctions or even deny access to those who need it.
Right now, network resource management isn’t based on total traffic volume. It’s based on cell sites during peak network use times.
In order to remedy this, phone networks need to upgrade and change their infrastructure to fix any potential problems from increased usage. There’s five key areas that need improvement to prepare for the influx of the connected car revolution:
1. Supporting Various Networks – This includes managing the interoperability between the various networks for Wi-Fi and LPWA networks.
2. Flexible Network Management – This includes RAM optimization. RAM optimization takes a combined approach to deal with the various demands that devices put on networks for capacity and quality of service.
3. Comprehensive Planning Tools – These are needed in order to understand where demand will be located in the future because of the influx of connected cars and mobile networks so that individual needs can be met for all users.
4. Managing Individual Device Needs – Measures need to be taken so that when new devices are added to a network, it won’t interfere with other users or create a decrease in speed or performance.
5. Spectrum Re-Farming – Something needs to be done to ensure considerations to the amount of M2M devices will be installed in hard-to-reach areas along with intended lifespan.
Mobile networks, right now, cannot handle the mass demand that connected cars will place upon them. Yet, there’s always hope. Seeing these potential problems now enables experts to improve networks while the connected car industry is still in early development.
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