Semiconductor shortage affecting development of connected car technologies


The dwindling supplies of the semiconductors relied upon by car manufacturers, the unprecedented weather in Texas and a recent factory fire in Japan for one of the world’s leading auto chip makers, has created a perfect storm for the future of connected car technology and in-car entertainment, according to leading software provider VNC Automotive.

Tom Blackie, Founder and CEO, VNC Automotive, said: “This is the biggest threat to the development of truly connected vehicles that we will see in a generation. It comes at a time when vehicle manufacturers are wrestling with the global impact of the COVID pandemic and the acceleration towards the mass adoption of EVs.

“Our customers are experiencing serious supply issues, with some making big long-term commitments in order to get any kind of guaranteed supply, and the implications are much higher costs. This situation is out of car manufacturers’ control and will force them to restrict production or compromise the technology they are able to implement in cars.

“This will ultimately impact consumers, who will be left with stagnated systems or, in extreme cases, retrograde technology as manufacturers and Tier 1 suppliers are forced to hobble systems to work with less advanced semiconductor designs. As a leader in the field of systems and software development, we’re concerned that it will lead to a generation of cars that will become quickly incompatible with future mobile phones and connectivity technology. In this way, it may have knock-on effects for the development of EVs and even autonomous technologies.”

With its software in approximately 35 million vehicles worldwide, VNC Automotive works across the entire transportation industry, including consumer, commercial, emergency services, as well as mobility. Its technology lies at the heart of a vehicles’ entertainment, navigation and telematics systems, allowing manufacturers and OEMs to enrich the experience of both drivers and passengers, through connectivity, multimedia and productivity.

Headquartered in one of the world’s largest technology clusters, in Cambridge UK, VNC automotive offers an end to end service, from proof-of-concept, technology delivery and through into production. Each project is tailored to the client’s needs but draws upon the company’s expertise in working with world-leading equipment providers and automotive manufactures.

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