Today’s drivers are witnesses to the dawn of a technological revolution that will one day (sooner than you probably think) completely change the face of tomorrow’s roads. Every time you’ve reversed into a parking spot and your rear parking sensors have beeped at you, every time you’ve used satellite navigation to reach your destination, every time you’ve connected your phone to your car via bluetooth, heck every time you’ve used cruise control, you’ve witnessed a cornerstone of what will result in the cars of the future. We’re already seeing a rise in driverless technology in the trucking industry but how will this trend be visible in tomorrow’s consumer vehicles?
While the major manufacturers are all working on a lot of fascinating concept cars boasting some incredibly futuristic tech, there’s clearly going to be a lot of testing involved before any of these advancements reach the consumers (especially with the inherent safety implications of driverless vehicles). That said, it’s pretty clear which ways the automotive industry appears to be leaning…
API (Application programming Interfaces) testing is already proving to be the future of testing for in-car connectivity, revealing that your car’s relationship with your phone will be a crucial step in future development. In fact, API testing is being used across a range of industries prior to user interface testing. For more information check out Automated API Testing and You: A Step-by-Step Tutorial. Suffice to say that since you can already lock, unlock, control your car’s temperature and even monitor performance using apps, we can expect much greater synergy between vehicles and mobile apps.
Hybrid and electric vehicles
We only have one planet and since the industrial age we’ve been treating it fairly poorly. Along with animal agriculture and heavy industry, the transportation sector is one of the prime offenders when it comes to pollution, harmful greenhouse gas emissions and climate change. As consumer demand has risen for cleaner, greener vehicles the industry has responded in kind, with Swedish manufacturer Volvo pledging that all its vehicles will be either hybrid or electric by 2019. The future will likely see us becoming less and less reliant on petroleum based fuels and embracing electric vehicles or at the very least, cleaner more sustainable forms of diesel fuel.
Driverless cars: Will they really happen?
Yes. And sooner than you think. In fact, a working prototype could only be a few months away. With recent advances in satellite navigation and reactive sensors we already have the technological infrastructure in place in today’s consumer vehicles, it’s just a case of integrating and refining them to the point where the driver can be removed from the equation. Ford have promised a fully autonomous vehicle without a steering wheel by 2021 and GM and Hyundai have both made similar claims. Volkswagen and Audi have been somewhat shrewder in their claims, but Audi have announced that they are aiming for “Level 3” automation (meaning that the vehicle will be able to drive itself for short spurts) in its A8 model which will reach the market by 2020.