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Get In: The Connected Vehicle Podcast From BlackBerry (Episode 3)

The Future of Location with HERE

A decade ago, cars were all about powertrains, transmissions, and other mechanical elements, with little discussion of the software they used. But today, vehicles are turning into software-defined entities, with digital experience at the core. A central enabler for this new software-defined automotive experience is location awareness technology. Once a car knows where it is, it can offer drivers nearby facilities – shops, restaurants, refueling or recharging, and many other enhancements – making the vehicle into much more than just a means of transportation.

Welcome to the third episode of “Get In: The Connected Vehicle Podcast from BlackBerry,” a series dedicated to exploring the possibilities created by -- and technologies behind -- the revolution in global transportation we are witnessing today. In this third episode, we meet Andrei Iordache, Senior Industry Solutions Manager at HERE Technologies, a pioneer in creating and adapting mapping and location data to the automotive market.

Click below to listen/watch the full Episode 3 podcast. Episode 2 can be found here.  
 

Navigation and guidance have moved from being an electronic “backseat driver” to the forefront of development efforts defining next-generation connected vehicles. “Now you don't need to plan your route from A to B and have lots of maps,” says Iordache. “You just put your destination in your navigation system, and the routing is automatically computed from A to B. The same with other mobility options, you don't need to hail a taxi, you just provide them your location and they'll come and pick you up and take you to your destination.”

Taxis could also be the first recipients of one of the most advanced future capabilities of connected vehicles, Iordache notes: self-driving. In fact, with Tesla and others trialing this technology in the US, and self-driving taxis already on the roads of some Chinese cities, this futuristic capability is very close to becoming present-day reality.

“When it comes to autonomy, we are seeing two development paths,” says Iordache. “One is the evolutionary path where the car that you own has more automated driving features. You have adaptive cruise control, then you have a highway pilot, maybe then you have autonomous parking, but it's all done in incremental steps to increase your driver experience. It’s not about replacing you as a driver.” This, according to Iordache, is a burgeoning new area where manufacturers can differentiate themselves, via the quality of the experience they provide to customers.

The second path, replacing the driver through full autonomy, is currently much less general and focused on specific areas and services. Today, “That's a solution developed only for a specific geofenced area,” says Iordache. It will take time for these two styles of autonomy to merge into an entirely autonomous solution for all vehicle uses and destinations, he says. “They will coexist for a while.” This is because local driving styles and context vary so much that full autonomy requires adaptation to each individual scenario.

HERE Technologies has spent decades enabling the location-aware technologies upon which today’s – and tomorrow’s – automated and self-driving features are based. “The company was set up in 1985 and operated under the brand of Navteq,” explains Iordache. “Navteq was the first company to put the maps for a navigation system into production in the early nineties. Since 2004, another dimension to our location solutions for our automotive appeared. We created the first ADAS (advanced driver-assistance systems) map for vehicles to use it for adaptive cruise control.” In 2008, Navteq was acquired by Nokia, but realizing the growing importance of ADAS, German auto giants BMW, Mercedes and Audi joined forces and acquired Navteq, which had already become HERE Technologies in 2011. “How we supplied the industry did not change because we continued working with the rest of the industry. So it wasn't something that became exclusive to these three OEMs.”

Since then, however, what has changed is how maps are delivered. “In the past we thought about maps as being a static piece of software that you installed in the production vehicle, on the production line, and you update with physical memory discs,” says Iordache. “From 2016, we made our location database available to an open platform and changed towards being a location platform. Today, this is what most of our customers leverage in their mapping, to provide the dynamic services and all the other assets for their location use cases.”

This has empowered a shift from map-based to location-based services. “In 2017-2018, we got new tech investors – Intel, Continental, and Bosch – and in 2020, we got investors from other industries, like Mitsubishi Corporation and NTT Data,” says Iordache. The tech companies are seeing increasing overlap between industries. “When you are talking about automated driving, you are also talking about transport and logistics. Also, when you are talking about dynamic services, you are talking about content, which is something very interesting for telco technologies like V2X.”

V2X is shorthand for “vehicle to everything,” where the car communicates with multiple external systems – from other cars to “smart” infrastructure, and everything in-between – to improve functions like efficiency and safety. “When it comes to location services, the map itself is the foundational element showing a digital representation of the road environment. There are other elements in addition to maps.” These dynamic elements change faster than the underlying map, and include “things like traffic information, seeing hazard warnings on the road, or even weather information at a specific location.”

These dynamic elements add real-time updates about what is happening on the road, complementing the map. This area represents a rapidly changing data platform, with new capabilities arriving all the time. “Creating maps and a digital representation of the environment is not a onetime goal,” says Iordache. “It's a continuous process to make sure that your representation on a map is the same as the representation of the real world. When it comes to maintaining and updating it, we are leveraging multiple technologies and multiple data sources. These data sources could be vehicle sensor data. So, information coming from vehicles, property data coming from movement of vehicles and goods, satellite data, third-party data, governmental data. We are producing around one terabyte of data every single day.”

Looking to the future, this coming together of data sources is a huge potential opportunity for automakers. “There are two major trends that are exciting us, because of the high potential synergies with location technology,” says Iordache. “On one hand is the evolution of vehicle architectures towards more centralized, more zonal architectures that allow more complex functionalities to develop between domains.” The other, related trend is the aforementioned movement toward greater vehicle autonomy.

In both cases, the work BlackBerry has been doing with the automotive industry will be fundamental. “This also comes-hand-in hand with something that BlackBerry does well, which is operating systems,” says Iordache. “Historically, the navigation was sitting in its own domain and then we had driving assistance and then maybe automated driving. The more these domains become virtualized instead of separated by hardware, the higher the potential is.” For example, an EV’s need for battery charging can be tied in with range estimation based on road environment, individual driving styles, nearby charging infrastructure and whether it’s available, possibly even reserving a charger ahead of arrival.

“Having this digital representation of the road environment is key for the mobility of the future,” says Iordache. “But maintaining the digital infrastructure requires a fusion of multiple data sources. Vehicles are becoming mobile data centers on wheels.” This is what BlackBerry® technology such as QNX® and BlackBerry IVY™ can facilitate. “Having platforms that can extract data from multiple sensors, from multiple actuators from the vehicles, is key to enable this to happen at scale.”

The result will be an exciting future for vehicular transportation. “We've been talking about the digitalization of mobility, but also automation,” says Iordache. “These two forces together have the capacity to make transportation more efficient, reduce delays, reduce uncertainty. Fewer delays in traffic can also mean fewer emissions, which is a very relevant topic of the day. 

“At the end of the day, it's about fewer accidents, fewer casualties. OEMs know that they need to be putting cleaner, more efficient, smarter vehicles on the road.” HERE Technologies’ groundbreaking work in location awareness, empowered by BlackBerry QNX and BlackBerry IVY solutions, will provide a fundamental cornerstone for delivering these features.

Listen to Episode 3 of “Get In: The Connected Vehicle Podcast from BlackBerry.” 

You can subscribe to "Get In: The Connected Vehicle Podcast from BlackBerry" at the following media services:

Podcast Transcript

Steve Kovsky:
Hi, welcome to Get In: The Connected Vehicle Podcast from BlackBerry. I'm your host, Steve Kovsky. With this series, we'll be diving into what the future of transportation might look like and today I have a guest who is deeply embedded in creating that future. I'm going to let him introduce himself.

Andrei Iordache:
Thank you, Steve. I appreciate the opportunity to be on the podcast and am happy to introduce myself. My name is Andrei Iordache. I'm a senior global manager at HERE technologies. My focus area is around automated driving and this relates to the future of automotive. I’m happy to discuss with you what the future holds for the industry.

Steve Kovsky:
One of the things we like to do is start by going back in time and talking about the first time you got behind the wheel, and how that experience has changed from then to now, and also how that early involvement with automobiles may have changed the trajectory of your career.

Andrei Iordache:
That's a very interesting question. In a way, it kind of defines my career from the first touchpoint to where we are today. I've always been super passionate about cars, but my fascination and admiration with cars pivoted in new directions over time. Funny enough, being super passionate, I got my first real job around 2007-2008 as an automotive journalist. I had the chance to observe the industry, to talk to the executives, but back then it was all about the power trains. It was all about the transmissions. It was all about the mechanical elements of the vehicle, that were exciting for the people.

There was little discussion about software capabilities and the car itself was sort of a standalone entity that didn't integrate that much with other devices or with your mobility options. Maybe, some Bluetooth® streaming here and there was coming up, maybe some navigation in the dashboard, but still the car was the car and everything else was separate.

Nowadays with electrification and software, I find that the fascination of the mechanical parts, the power trains, the transmissions, has decreased over time. It’s more about the software elements and how they're evolving. It’s the software-defined vehicle that's getting people’s attention. I'm saying this, not just from my own perspective, but sometimes when I'm talking to some former journalist colleagues, and even the guys that were the most hardcore petrol heads. Now we end up discussing, not combustion engine technology, but more about the digital experience of the vehicle. I would say that in the time from when I started in the industry, up to this point, we witnessed what I would call the digitalization of mobility in the vehicles themselves – and also in the wider mobility.

Now, you don't need, say, to plan your route from A to B and have X maps. You just put your destination into your navigation system, and the routing is automatically computed from A to B. It’s also the same with other mobility options. You don't need to whistle or hail a taxi, you just provide them with your location, and they'll come and pick you up, and take you to your destination. It’s the same with public transportation. The times where you had to know timetables by heart or know what your options are, are gone now. You just, again, provide your desired destination, check your options, see what your departure and arrival times are, and you are set to go.

Steve Kovsky:
It's a really exciting time and a lot of change going on. It's interesting that you mentioned that, because I spoke yesterday to one of the journalists of Motor Trend about how they are an iconic brand in automotive journalism, and they're changing very much in terms of how they view cars, how they evaluate cars, because their Car of the Year is a very prestigious award. They're trying to learn how to judge the quality of electric vehicles, and soon they'll have to judge the quality of autonomous vehicles. How soon are we going to see autonomous vehicles? When we call a taxi, the taxi arrives, but there's no human in it?

Andrei Iordache:
If we're thinking about the global scale, this type of question might not have the same answer everywhere. In certain parts of the world, we may be seeing this already. In San Francisco, you have robot taxis or autonomous shuttles that can come and pick you up. In other parts of the world, it'll still take decades before we get there. When it comes to autonomy, what we are seeing are sort of two development paths. One is what I would personally call the evolutionary path where your vehicles, the car that you own, has more automated driving features. You have the adaptive cruise control. Now you have a highway pilot. Then you have autonomous parking. But it's all done in incremental steps to increase your driver experience.

It's not about replacing you as the driver. It's making sure that routine tasks, the things that you may not enjoy that much in driving, like finding a parking spot or cruising on the highway, are taken care of by the automated driving system. I would say that's one element, which is happening, and actually growing. We are seeing a lot of level two plus vehicles, a lot of level three vehicles on the market. I think from the perspective of your discussion with journalists, this is probably now the topic that they are talking about the most.

Everybody's benchmarking, the dual track versus autopilot versus the system from BMW versus Mercedes. That's what's fascinating. They're discussing less about the six cylinder from an OEM versus the four cylinder from another OEM, if I can make this parallel. But that is one path.

There is a second path, which you alluded to. It has to do with replacing the driver. In mobility services, making sure that you don't need a driver. These autonomous shuttles can actually operate, can take you from A to B, without you being inside. This is also happening in certain parts of the world, more than in other parts of the world. The difference with this is that they are starting with these use cases of autonomy in very geo-fenced areas and only there.

What I mean by this, if we take an autonomous shuttle from somewhere, from San Francisco and we put it in Paris, it won't be able to handle the reality. That's a solution developed for only that specific geo-fence area and it'll always operate there as a service. While your vehicle, for example, may not have the same level of full autonomy, but it's actually designed in a way that can take you across countries and across cities. These would be the two paths that we're seeing. It may take some time until these two are coming together and are meeting, but they will coexist for a while, at least in the mobility landscape.

Steve Kovsky:
You bring up some really interesting points and I want to talk more about geographies because I was comparing a video of an autonomous vehicle in San Francisco versus one in a city in China. It's completely different. China was so much more chaotic. There were so many more pedestrians and vehicles of every kind, coming out of every area of the roadway at all times and much less consciousness about staying on your side of the road or even in the road or off the road.

But before we do that, I think I'd like you to talk a little bit about HERE technologies because many consumers might not be familiar with that. They're familiar with the brands that own and operate that entity, but they may not know exactly who it is and what it does. Could you tell me a little bit about the parentage of HERE technologies and what it's trying to accomplish?

Andrei Iordache:
HERE Technologies is a company in the space of location technology and location information with quite a history. The company was set up in 1985 and it operated under the name or under the brand of Navteq. Still many people know us as Navteq, but the company and the industry evolved quite a lot. In the beginning, Navteq was the first company to put the maps for a navigation system in production in the early nineties, I believe. That was one of the first milestones of the company.

After that, in the navigation space, we're quite well known, and this evolved. Since 2004, another dimension to our location solutions for automotive appeared. In 2004 we created the first ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance Systems) map for a vehicle to use for adaptive cruise control.

After the ADAS map, around 2015, the company being Navteq was at one point acquired by Nokia. It became the location and commerce part of Nokia. In 2015, German OEMs saw how the world is evolving and how their location needs might evolve with automated driving and autonomous driving in ADAS. They decided – BMW, Mercedes, and Audi – to join forces and acquire what back then was already named as HERE, to be a supplier for mapping. So, the ownership changed, but how we supply the industry did not because we continued working with the rest of the industry.

It wasn't something that became exclusive to the three OEMs. What changed though, and this was something that we are seeing already, if in the past when we're thinking about maps as being a static piece of software that you install in the production vehicle, on the production line, and you update it with physical memory discs, was this process. From 2015, from 2016 to be more precise, we made our location database available to an open platform. We changed to a location platform and today, most of our customers leverage it to pull in the mapping, the dynamic services, and all the other assets that we have for their location use cases.

Steve Kovsky:
Andrei, tell me the companies that are behind HERE technologies, and then let's dig a little bit more into the difference between map-based and location-based. I'm not sure that everyone understands it. I'm not sure I understand it. Let's go there. First you mentioned some of those iconic brands that are investors and owners of HERE technology, could you list them for us?

Andrei Iordache:
Yes. I was mentioning in the earlier question that HERE is the three German OEMs: Audi, BMW, and Mercedes, started investing in 2016, seeing the benefit of location technology for their development in navigation, but mostly also in ADAS and automated driving. Over time, more investors came aboard. I think in 2017-2018, we got new tech investors, Intel, Continental, and Bosch, and in 2020, we got investors from other industries like Mitsubishi Corporation and NTT Data, just for the simple fact that we are seeing that the uses of location and the lines between the industries are overlapping.

When you are talking about automated driving, you are also talking about transport and logistics. This is also a segment that not just OEMs are concerned about, but also the ones that are developing solutions for transport and logistics. Also, when you are talking about dynamic services, when you are talking about content, this is something that is also very interesting for telco technologies like V2X. We currently have a very diverse set of investors that reflect the importance, but also the appeal of location for various industries.

Steve Kovsky:
That ties into the meaning of location versus mapping. For some of us, that's a little hazy. Can you explain that?

Andrei Iordache:
I would say that although I don't think there's a standard definition, there's no right or wrong way to look it or answer. I would say the following. The maps are one element of location. When it comes to location technology or to location services, the map itself is the foundational element. It's the one that shows a digital representation of the road environment. Let's put it like this. There are other elements in addition to maps. Sometimes the world might be changing faster and things like traffic information, seeing things like hazard warnings on the road, or even weather information at a specific location. These are elements that, given how the map is, you will not be able to code them or layer them in a map. This is what we would call location services that work together with the map, but provide updates in real time or even in near real time latency of what's happening on the road. Of these two I would say, you have location technology on one hand as mapping and then dynamic services that complement mapping.

Steve Kovsky:
It's interesting to me on the wall behind me are these 15th century maps of part of the British Isles, and the surface of the planet is the same, for the most part, as it was in that time. But it's a really chaotic, messy place. The science of being able to traverse vehicles around that geography, to me, is just sort of amazing. What are some of the technological advances that you're taking advantage of? Is it artificial intelligence? Is it cloud computing, edge computing? What are some of the things that are really key to making this work?

Andrei Iordache:
That's a very good observation and discussion point as creating maps and creating a digital representation of the environment are not one goal. The moment you think, we've done it, there's something changing. It's a continuous process that you have to keep going over; you have to feed in to make sure that your representation on a map is actually the same as the representation of the real world. When we had historic maps, they were probably updated maybe every ten years and it was a very slow process, it took a lot of manual work. Digital mapping also started like this. It was a lot of manual work and surveys done by humans on the road environment, but the requirements and the means for mapping have evolved over time.

Now we're getting to a point where we have the foundation, the map, our global map will stay the same, but what we need to continuously work on and update are the things that are changing. Sometimes there might be construction areas. There might be lanes. There might be new speed limits. There might be, let's say, you name it. Whatever would change and would make what you had yesterday be redundant today – if you had not updated it? From that perspective, when it comes to maintaining and updating, we are leveraging multiple technologies and multiple data sources. On hand, we have our own survey vehicles, the ones with Lidar, cameras, and are super advanced, that go on the road.

These are very good for whenever it comes to building new content and when it comes to very high-quality content. Even with a fleet, which I would say we have a pretty big fleet because we have a long history, it's very difficult to keep everything in sync with things that are changing on the roads. From that perspective, we're also leveraging other data sources. These data sources could be vehicle sensor data, information coming from vehicles, prop data coming from movement of vehicles and goods. Satellite data, third party data, governmental data. They're brought in, all together, because they all have certain types of data sources. They all have their strengths, but they also have their weaknesses. From that perspective, leveraging so many data sources, we try to provide the most complete mix to keep reality accurately represented in our location services and also in our maps.

Now, the question that comes up, when you have that much data, and I think we are producing more than one terabyte of data every single day, how do you actually process it? This processing of course requires a lot of AI and machine learning in the background, to be able to make sure the information is coming from a specific vehicle. If there's a speed limit it's actually consistent with information that we might be having from a different source or say, the lanes that we are seeing from a certain type of source are aligned with satellite imagery. The two overlap. Imagine that the world is a vast environment, without leveraging AI and machine learning into these processes, it wouldn't work.

There is still also where sometimes the reality might be so puzzling that we need to have quality engineers check it there. At the end of the day, I'll say to have the process that we have and to supply the customers how they need to be supplied, is a mix of multiple sources, a mix of AI, but also sometimes having people assisting the AI and making sure that what we're getting from the AI is making sense. 

Steve Kovsky:
A lot of the heavy lifting I think is now happening on the vehicle itself. Let's talk about some of the developments in the vehicle. You've mentioned V2X, which I think is vehicle to other vehicles, to infrastructure, to what are they communicating with. What are some of the key software developments and technological developments that are making this possible and really bringing the connected car, not simply to life, but making it so relevant and important to transportation going forward?

Andrei Iordache:
There are actually two major trends that we are seeing in the space of mobility and automotive that excite us because they come up with high potential synergies with location technology. The first one, the first trend, is what I would call the evolution of vehicle architectures, from separate ECUs to more centralized and more zonal architectures that actually allow the OEMs to develop much more complex functionalities between domains. This also comes hand in hand with something that BlackBerry does quite well: operating systems. I think there is still much more that can be extracted from the vehicle and many more functions can be controlled with this centralized vehicle architecture, but also with operating systems. What I mean by this is that historically we had the navigation sitting in its own domain and then we had driving assistance and then automated driving.

In the beginning, they were not too connected. Everybody was operating in their own space, but these multiple systems can actually benefit from location information and the more these domains become virtualized instead of separated by hardware, the higher the potential is. Let me give you an example that hopefully clarifies it. Let's say that you are driving an EV and you are running low on the battery. What typically happens is that you have to find the charging station that's within your remaining driving range. You have to make sure that it's available at the time you've done the search, but by the time you actually got to the charging station, you've probably been praying that the charging station is still available. That means treating the battery, the power train, the navigation, and the infrastructure as very separate domains.

There would still be an element of planning that has to be done, but there's also an element of luck to make sure that you are not getting to the charging station, and it was occupied. What could happen with this communication of location between the vehicle systems and between the vehicle systems and infrastructure, the following could happen. The vehicle will know when it's running low on battery, find the charging station, recommend the charging station, and also estimate your achievable range based on your driving style, based on the road information if you're driving uphill or downhill and come up with the estimated time of arrival to the charging station. Based on the estimated time of arrival to the charging station, this one could be communicated to the charging station to make sure that you are reserving your charging spot exactly when you get there.

This is an example of an experience where you don't know what will happen but just by exchanging information between domains and having this location information exchange between the vehicle and the infrastructure, will make sure that you get there, be charging and then be on your way. The second trend we are seeing is the collective perception of vehicles, devices, and smart sensors in the infrastructure. We've been talking about this already, right? Having this digital representation of the road environment is key for the mobility of the future. Maintaining the digital infrastructure requires this fusion of multiple data sources. As I said, in our map making, we are already leveraging multiple sources, but you never have enough scale.

If you really want to cover the entire planet and the entire road classes and everything, industry action needs to come together. It needs to have the OEMs that are owning and operating the vehicles, but also have the technological enablers that can help them extract the information that's relevant and provide it to developers. You might say that from that perspective, we could be a developer of location. Then, get back a service or get back a location service or any other customer service that actually benefits from the data that is being crowdsourced and pulled across multiple OEMs, across vehicles and devices, across smart sensors in the infrastructure, you name it. I think this is something we are seeing the first steps in now, but it's something that needs to happen at a much bigger scale to enable an autonomous world for everyone.

Steve Kovsky:
Andrei, these trends that you've talked about are very exciting. I'm interested in the roles that various partners are playing such as BlackBerry with HERE Technologies. We are partnering in this. What are the areas of that software stack and that tech technology model that we're seeing come to fruition here?

Andrei Iordache:
If I start with my second trend, the one with collective perception, I would say this is a major development for the industry. We know that vehicles, connected vehicles and automated driving vehicles are becoming mobile data centers on wheels, you can call it, but extracting the data, and we are seeing it today, there's still a lot of noise and a high amount of data that’s not exactly usable. From that perspective, having platforms that can extract data from multiple sensors, from multiple actuators from the vehicles, is key. To have platforms and standards that can enable this to happen to scale, because sometimes one OEM might have an idea, the second OEM might have another idea and they might come up with their own way of working and extracting and analyzing data.

At the end of the day, as I said, it's all about scale. This one, the data, in my view, I'm also seeing that if software is becoming the new engine, actual data is becoming the new fuel. The thing with the fuel is that, like we see for combustion engines, if every OEM would have its own way of doing fuel and that fuel would work only with their engine, we wouldn't be able to drive. There will always be scarcity of fuel. Once you have common standards, once you have the experts and platforms that can leverage this data, provide it to the developers, and the developers to develop the services and location-based content that every vehicle can leverage – not just vehicles as in cars, but also buses, you name it, scooters, bicycles, pedestrians.

This is where we're getting to an autonomous world for everyone. From that perspective, I think, yeah, any initiative that helps the industry and any initiatives that the industry is getting involved with in leveraging the data from the vehicle, making sense, extracting it, localizing it and turning it into useful insights, It's very welcome.

Steve Kovsky:
Okay. Andrei, you've given us a lot to think about, and before I let you go. I want to ask you, what do you think should really excite consumers about what's coming in the next say five years and why is this so important? Why should automakers be excited about these coming changes?

Andrei Iordache:
That's actually a very good ending question and I would say that consumers per se might be less excited as we are, the tech experts in the technology, but I'm sure that they'll be very excited about the benefits of these changes. We've been talking about the digitalization mobility, but also with automation.

These two forces together have the capacity to make transportation more efficient, reduce delays, reduce uncertainty, where you're getting to certain places. Also, reduce delays in traffic can also mean less emissions, which is a very relevant topic of the day. At the end of the day, it's also about less accidents, less casualties. This can all be enhanced with better knowledge of your environment, better knowledge of what's happening beyond your line of sight. What we expect, where is a traffic jam, where is a potential accident? Where is the danger?

There's something on your route. How can you take an alternative route to make sure that you're not stuck there? You are reaching your end destination. Where is the parking spot? Or even better, if your car has the capability, you just activate automated parking and you let it go on its own in the parking garage, park itself, wait for you and come back.

These are all exciting elements that address the needs of the consumers for more free time, cleaner air and also safety on the roads. We are seeing now that the life of the human beings it's becoming very an important topic and also the industry itself is making big progresses to make sure that all of these three areas are supporting the vision zero.

Steve Kovsky:
That's fantastic. From the automaker point of view, what is driving them toward these? You mentioned necessity and, and in some ways, inevitability. Are they embracing this future and how do they see it benefiting them?

Andrei Iordache:
Certainly. I think on the automotive side, there is excitement for the technology, but there's also the necessity side of it. OEMs, we know that they need to be putting on the road, cleaner, more efficient, smarter vehicles. There's both push from the regulation side, but there is also customer acceptance. We are seeing that customers do value vehicles that are smarter, vehicles that are cleaner, vehicles that are quieter. I think we are where certain OEMs have shown that this is the way to go forward. I think every single OEM that we know is working along these three coordinates, and I previously mentioned vision zero and most of the OEMs would have it in their strategy: zero emission, zero delays, and zero casualties.

Steve Kovsky:
That's a future I can buy into and thank you so much, Andrei, for the contribution you're making to help us get there sooner. I thank you so much for joining us on the podcast today.

Andrei Iordache:
Thank you very much, Steve. It's been a pleasure and yes, I'm very excited also how the industry is coming together and supporting the OEMs and supporting the consumers with this future that we all want to have.

Steve Kovsky:
That's the end of our episode for today, but if you'd like to get more information on the topics or our guest, check out https://www.blackberry.com/podcast and the connected vehicle podcast from BlackBerry is available wherever you get your podcasts. Don't forget to subscribe, to keep up to date with our latest episodes.

Steve Kovsky

About Steve Kovsky

Steve Kovsky is Editorial Director at BlackBerry.