Japanese automaker Toyota together with five other companies, have united with MIT Media Lab in using blockchain technology in making driverless cars. The collaboration on the project was broadcasted at Consensus 2017 (3rd annual blockchain technology summit).
Blockchain Technology and its Advantages
The project involves Toyota Research Institute (TRI), which is exclusively owned by Toyota Motor North America. The good thing about the blockchain technology is that it cannot be corrupted. It is like a digital ledger that allows digital information to be shared but not copied. Hackers are not given the chance to corrupt existing information, which is way safer. The other potential use of this technology aside from the Bitcoin is its growing use that it can be utilized to self-driving cars, too. This creates new business opportunities for tech companies and carmakers.
Blockchain Secures Data for Carmakers
Such project would authorize secured sharing of data used for testing and driving of such cars. The database would be safe enough when the driverless car technology is already available and out in the market.
Chris Ballinger, Director of Mobility Services and Chief Financial Officer at Toyota Research Institute even said that in order to develop the safest and most reliable autonomous car, hundreds of billions of driving data is needed. Blockchain allows such to happen since it enables sharing and pooling of data from manufacturers to vehicle owners, and hence, can shorten the period needed to achieve the goal in developing driverless cars.
The generated data from vehicle testing to the actual car usage can be shared to both businesses and consumers including insurance companies to attain transparency of data which can later reduce fraud. It can be beneficial to all parties involved.
Accumulated Data Acts like an Invisible Airbag
Since more and more content can be shared, in a span of few years, if the data is utilized properly it can greatly benefit car manufacturers to make rides more comfortable and also the users to keep them informed and educated.
Digital Currency Initiative (at the MIT Media Lab) Director Neha Narula, said in a statement that he is excited that the Japanese carmaker is spearheading to use the blockchain technology which can provide a platform where users and manufacturers can share their data. He further added that he hopes that the other manufacturers would join such effort to make driverless cars a point closer to reality.
Positive Impact on Future Mobility
Toyota Research Institute is into supporting the promotion of a common standard when it comes to building autonomous vehicles. Adoption of this technology can even accelerate and improve the present mobility infrastructure attempts of technological companies in creating driverless car technology. Aside from that, lower costs can also be another advantage.
Toyota is making a big revolution in the automobile industry. Experts even acknowledge that blockchain is the new wave in technology. Toyota appears to be the first in the industry to make a difference. Due to several benefits brought by this new technology, it might bring real and valuable positive impact on the driverless car endeavor. Today, Toyota’s stocks traded by -0.27% to ¥5,985, which is down by 16. The investors might not yet appreciate the technology right now, but if Toyota can prove the supremacy of the blockchain technology, things might change later on.
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