Memo from the Edge of V2X

Vehicle to everything technology (V2X) is one of the most exciting and thriving areas in the connected car ecosystem. At the center of this promising technology are two approaches, both racing to the finish line and vying for the attention of automakers and government bodies.

DSRC, also called 802.11p, is built on tried and true standards and a proven record in truck platooning and smart cities. Volkswagen and GM have both adopted a DSRC-based version and the US government’s notice of proposed rulemaking and the European Parliament’s recent report has also weighed into the discussion.

On the other side is a cellular version of V2X, called C-V2X, built on either 4G or 5G networks and also embraced by some automakers and technologists, primarily for its future potential.

Let me tell you where I think the industry is currently and where it will go.

DSRC: On the road now with more to come

DSRC is mature, tested, proven, and ready for the market. It has been through the long and rigorous automotive qualification process, and is already in production at GM for US market. 5G is the new kid on the block – it’s powerful, has limitless potential and will bring a variety of breathtaking opportunities for the future in-vehicle experiences, new services and mobility opportunities. (5G is ten years behind DSRC in terms of automotive release and testing as a road-ready technology.)

Volkswagen Group, which includes VW, Audi, Skoda, and Porsche has announced its endorsement of DSRC for intelligent transportation systems (ITS) safety, and this means that a great number of European cars will be produced and driving around with the technology. Other carmakers are following Volkswagen & GM, down the path to DSRC.

C-V2X: Backwards compatibility challenge

One day, 5G will also be deployed in cars as cellular-based non-safety services are offered by more and more car makers. However, there are backwards compatibility issues with different releases of C-V2X standards by industry group 3GPP. The latest standard is Release 14 (R14) (for 4G, not 5G). But, the fact is R14 is not backwards-compatible with the soon-to-be released R15 (again, it’s for 4G, not 5G). In the same way, R16 (for 5G, not 4G) will not be backwards-compatible either. So cars fitted with different versions will not be able to talk to each other and thus, won’t work in my opinion.

Synergy with both DSRC and 5G, but each has its own merits

I see real industry interest now in DSRC, and I predict that the outcome will be more colorful than we dared to dream. In the future, with the C-V2X standard tested, proven and ready for production, 5G will offer great new consumer experiences. The two technologies can co-exist and they can be synergistic to a degree, but the safety-relevant features will be covered by 802.11p.

We welcome you to review our latest whitepapers on the merits of 5G and V2X and we also welcome your spirited debate.

C-ITS: Three observations on LTE-V2X and ETSI ITS-G5

Car-to-car communication: IEEE802.11p ahead of LTE-V2V for safety critical applications

Lars Reger
Lars Reger
Lars Reger, Senior Vice President, is Chief Technology Officer at NXP Semiconductors. As CTO, Lars is responsible for managing new business activities and R&D in the focus markets of Automotive, Industry 4.0., Internet of Things, Mobile, and Connectivity & Infrastructure. NXP has the broadest processor portfolio for the Internet of Things and is the world's largest chip supplier to the automotive industry. NXP and its global team of experts drive the development of autonomous, securely connected vehicles and accelerate the introduction of smart and securely connected devices for the Internet of Things through its outstanding edge computing expertise. Before joining NXP, Lars gained deep insight into the microelectronics industry with a focus on the automotive sector. He began his career with Siemens Semiconductors as Product Engineer in 1997. His past roles at Infineon included Head of the Process and Product Engineering departments, Project Manager for Mobile System Chips, and Director of IP Management. Prior to joining NXP as CTO of the automotive division in 2008, he was responsible for business development and product management within the Connectivity Business Unit at Continental. In December 2018 Lars was appointed CTO and has since then been responsible for the overall technology portfolio of NXP.

1 Comment

  1. Avatar Krzysztof Lech says:

    I had this idea long time ago to build mash network with all cars for smooth traffic control system.
    I was thinking to use the mobile phones instead build system inside the car. The problem is always with traffic lights make cars stop and go don’t improve smooth drive. Your system can improve everything. The cars can exchange information like a ants working together. If emergency car want to go to accident then all cars in that road can get information about it with exactly time to passing by. Also the tragic system accident information.
    The system is great idea 🙂

Buy now