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Former Chinese Minister Says the Country Should Develop a Unified Smart Vehicle OS

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【Summary】In the future when autonomous electric vehicles are more capable, it might better serve the industry to develop a unified vehicle OS in China, as well as the chips that support it, according to former Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, Miao Wei. Mr Wei made the remarks on Thursday at an industry conference in Shanghai held by the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM).

FutureCar Staff    Jun 18, 2021 12:30 PM PT
Former Chinese Minister Says the Country Should Develop a Unified Smart Vehicle OS

With dozens of startups, automakers and tech companies developing autonomous driving technology independently in the US, the vehicles lack a unified core operating system. Instead most are using a mixture of open source and proprietary technology. 

However in the future as autonomous electric vehicles are more capable, it might better serve the industry to develop a unified vehicle OS, as well as the chips that support it. 

Having a unified vehicle OS could increase the safety and performance of electric autonomous vehicles and make China a global leader in the auto industry, which is the belief of former Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, Miao Wei.

Mr Wei made the remarks on Thursday at an industry conference in Shanghai held by the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM).

A standard vehicle architecture can simplify design and centralize compute power, as well as optimize vehicle sensors and their functionality.

As reported by Reuters, Mr. Wei also suggested that China should support companies developing semiconductors and integrated circuits. Wei called on industries including transportation, electronic communications, Internet, and automotive to join together to promote the strategic development of the next-generation of 5G V2X-enabled intelligent-connected vehicles.

Wei added that China should learn from the recent attempts by U.S. regulators to ban some Chinese technology companies and boost its independence in vehicle-related technology.

U.S. President Joe Biden in April said the United States must ramp up production of electric vehicles to catch and surpass China, which is the world's biggest auto market. 

However, the U.S. relies mainly on Asian suppliers for the chips and batteries for electric vehicles. As a result, the U.S. is not in a position right now to lessen its reliance on Chinese companies. China, on the other hand, has the opportunity to standardize automotive technology to meet its goal of being the world's leading market for electric and intelligent vehicles.

According to automotive component supplier Aptiv, It's not sustainable to continue the traditional approach of adding a new ECU to support each new vehicle feature, each with its own power supply, data and connectivity requirements. 

The company published its findings in 2020 in a white paper about smart vehicle architecture. Aptiv says it won't scale, and is too complex, especially as the industry moves towards electrification and fully autonomous driving. 


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