Tue, 29-Sep-2020
Wednesday 05 Aug 2020 , 2:04 pm

Autonomous Vehicles Will Only Accelerate the Trend of Ride Sharing and Declining Vehicle Ownership: David Cheskis, Vice-President, Product Management, LeddarTech

The automotive sector is transforming at a rapid pace. Autonomous vehicles are gaining attraction from consumers all around the world. Many automotive and tech companies are involved in the autonomous vehicles market. In an exclusive interview with Smart Industry News, David Cheskis, Vice-President of Product Management, LeddarTech, talks about the trends in the autonomous vehicles market that we will experience in the next few years.
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David Cheskis
David Cheskis, Vice-President, Product Management, LeddarTech

As observed in the past few years, many automotive companies are focusing on the development and manufacturing of advanced vehicles. In your opinion, which factors are driving the growth of the autonomous vehicles market?

There are several factors driving the growth of autonomous vehicles, including the current desire for autonomous delivery vehicles during the COVID-19 pandemic. We need this capability today in order to get food and medical supplies to people while reducing the possibility of spreading the virus. That’s not what people expected to drive the adoption of autonomous vehicles, but it is certainly having a huge impact on society today.

Overall, the adoption of autonomous vehicles is being driven by technology readiness, market opportunities, policy, and consumer acceptance. This trend will continue to grow and accelerate as more applications arise and we all get more excited about how our lives are changing with autonomous vehicles rather than just viewing it as a technology of the future.

Due to digitization and changes in lifestyles including increased multi-tasking and stress levels, it has been reported that millennials don’t seem to want to own a vehicle. Instead, they opt for ride hail or ride sharing as options for traveling. Will the availability of autonomous vehicles change this trend?

Autonomous vehicles will only accelerate the trend of ride sharing and declining vehicle ownership. Autonomous vehicles will reduce the costs of ride sharing services and make them more available, which will just compound the effect on how quickly and broadly they will be adopted. This will also have other societal effects, including reduced traffic and pollution.

As many cities are becoming “smart cities” and enabling smart mobility, which changes will we experience in mobility if/when autonomous vehicles are adopted on a large scale?

Urban environments have the most to gain from autonomous vehicles since they will be able to significantly reduce traffic, congestion, pollution, parking issues, etc. All great changes to already thriving cities. These changes will all be a result of mobility improvements both to/from cities, as well as in/around cities. Autonomous vehicles will be used to travel to/from work or to/from the train station. Smart cities will be able to optimize traffic flow and vehicle locations that will translate into shorter drive times to wherever you are going.

Will future smart cities have the infrastructure for autonomous vehicles?

Smart cities are best positioned to take advantage of autonomous vehicles precisely because of their infrastructure. Technologies that exchange information received from autonomous vehicles will in turn make them smarter and more efficient. The 5G wireless networks which enable communication is the first step and works best in an urban setting. It will require a lot of investment that governments, telecommunications companies, and others are all providing in the infrastructure to make this work. The infrastructure is a key component.

In your experience, what are the struggles that companies involved in the market are currently experiencing? To deal with these struggles, which strategies do they need to implement?

Today, the biggest challenge in this market is how quickly the market and technologies are evolving. What works today will be replaced quickly by next-generation technology. Our solution at LeddarTech is to establish an ecosystem of partners with complementary technology that allow us to adapt rapidly to market forces.

Which factors have the potential to stall the growth of the autonomous vehicles market?

Humans. One of the biggest challenges to vehicle autonomy is for a self-driving car to interact with the unpredictable actions of human drivers and pedestrians. Another big challenge is our acceptance of the technology and regulations that we put in place.

What is your prediction about the state of the market in 20 years?

In 2040, you will see a lot of autonomous vehicles. The automotive market will grow with many new vehicles supporting full autonomy. There will be so many autonomous vehicles on our roads that we will have special travel zones in cities and lanes on highways. Soon after that, we will reach the tipping point where there will be more autonomous vehicles on the road than people driving cars – and then they will be everywhere.

Shuttles, taxis, buses, trucks, delivery vehicles, and even off-road vehicles in construction, mining, and agriculture are all markets that will grow quickly.




Neha Mule

Neha writes articles on sectors including medicine, food, materials, and science & technology. A qualified statistician, she has the ability to observe and analyze the trends in global markets and write compelling articles that help CXOs in decision making. She is a bookworm and loves to read fiction, lifestyle, science and technology. Neha comes with 6 years of experience in content writing and editing that involves blog writing, preparation of study materials and OERs.

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