Sleek, savvy, simple: The future of the "Connected Car"

Sleek, savvy, simple: The future of the "Connected Car"

Summary: Someday our vehicles may do the thinking for us, connecting us on and off the road.

TOPICS: ÜberTech

Imagine a world in which your car does the thinking for you, simplifying your role as driver and saving you time on the road. Imagine a world in which your car could navigate you to an open parking spot or notify you of a nearby sale on items you love.

Your car would recognize your interests and could easily direct you to destinations tailored to your wants and needs.

Endless possibilities


Yesterday morning on my way to work, I was running incredibly late and knew that by the time I arrived at the office, parking would be impossible.

But wouldn't it be cool if my car could point me in the direction of an open parking garage and inform me of any associated fees as I approached my destination? This would cut at least 30 minutes from my morning commute, letting me to stroll into the office with time to spare before my 8AM. Instead, I ran, to find the meeting room just in the nick of time.

After my morning of back-to-back meetings ended, I decided to use my lunch break to run a few errands. Digging through my purse, I realized I left my coupons at home on the kitchen table and didn't have time to look online for printable vouchers. Wouldn't it be convenient if my car were able to display deals based on my current location and then navigate to those stores?

In today’s world, who would mind saving some extra time and money?

As the end of the day approached, I was exhausted and ready to hit the road. About half way through my commute home, my gas light blinked and, to my surprise, the tank was on "empty."

Life would be much easier if my car could send automatic alerts when the gas tank was low and guide me to a close-by and cost-efficient gas station. Such forewarning would again save money and the misfortune of potentially getting lost searching for a gas station at an unfamiliar exit on the highway.

The future is upon us

Soon, my dreams of an enriched driving experience may become reality.

SAP has teamed with BMW Group Research and Technology to create an innovative research prototype based on the SAP HANA Cloud Platform. With the extended ConnectedDrive system, we may be able to enjoy the convenience of a connected and social world right from the dashboard of our vehicles.

How would it work? You could create a mobile profile based on customized preferences like where you like to shop, your frequent destinations, foods you enjoy, your favorite restaurants, and so on. Based on your profile, your car could alert you to personalized offerings and direct you to the nearest store so that you'd never forget to buy an anniversary card or birthday gift again.

If a donut shop near your current driving location was giving away free coffee and your profile showed that you run on caffeine, your car could alert you of the deal and navigate you there. What better way to brighten your Monday morning blues than with a cup of fresh steaming hot coffee — for free?

Enhancing your experience

When discussing the innovation that SAP and BMW Group Research and Technology are teaming to create, the term "Connected Car" is an understatement. The SAP HANA Cloud Platform has the advanced technology to create infinite possibilities for the future of the automotive industry that keep the driver at the center of the experience. Maybe now, not only could your car deliver you from point A to point B, but your vehicle could enhance the art and science of living.

And for me, well, you’d better believe that I’d program my car to take me straight to the best "happy hour" deal every Friday around 5PM.

Stay Connected with me on Twitter: @CMDonato or on LinkedIn

Topic: ÜberTech


Christine Donato is an integrated marketing expert in SAP Global Marketing where she focuses on SAP HANA. She is passionate about improving healthcare with innovation and technology and telling the tale of how technology makes the world run better. @CMDonato

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.


Log in or register to join the discussion
  • What i learned

    What I learned from this article. 1) Doubt that I would like a larger city. 2) Humans at some point will not function as memory is no longer challenged and thus fails to work without trusted computer to come to our aid. Spontaneity and surprises to be replaced by known choices reissued as best choices given by the computer. Surprises are no longer available as everything going on is entered at the place you are going to into a computer so that you no longer will have that moment in time. Kinda sad. 3) A car is fun when driven -- self driven cars will be a bore. The more tech added to a car beyond that of which aids in keeping a engine running smoothly, usually on serves to add to downtime, as complexity means more systems to crash.
    • Technology will only go as far as you let it

      Hi mytake4this-

      I see your point, but I also think that vehicle technology will only go as far as you allow. If you don't want a socially connected car, you don't have to buy one. Perhaps, in the future, the choice to drive a regular car of 2014 won't exist, however, I doubt that will happen for many many many years.

      In regard to your comment about systems failure, in terms of the Google self driving car, in an article from April 29, 2014, Google's self-driving cars have now logged 700,000 miles of accident free driving. Most automobile accidents are caused by human error. Food for thought: when you take the human out of the equation, does that eliminate the chance of driving error? Google noted that they are not ready to release the car outside of CA because the software is very specifically tuned to their current map system.

      My only potential fear would be that the software maps don't update to changes in the road in real time... but realistically, I think that the tech is so far advanced, that that won't be a worry in the future. And hey, maybe Google will run SAP HANA to provide those reporting and analytical real time updates someday :)

      You might like this article if you haven't already read it. I found it very interesting: http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/181508-googles-self-driving-car-passes-700000-accident-free-miles-can-now-avoid-cyclists-stop-for-trains

  • chi straightener

    chi straightener hair can be divided according to the type of heating element in the ceramic heater , PTC heating element and a heat generating element MCH . Advantages of the ceramic heating element is environmental protection, heating speed , usually 30 seconds to 45 seconds can make the splint surface temperature reaches 200 degrees. However, due to the ceramic heating element under high-temperature sintering above 1000 degrees , the temperature in the circuit out of control, will quickly more than 300 degrees , it will burn the plastic material fixed hot plate , so that the heating plate off, there may be exposed to users, and burn the skin. PTC Positive Temperature Coefficient is the abbreviation of translation is a positive temperature coefficient , referred to as PTC thermistors. PTC is also at a high temperature sintering , but he can be a maximum surface temperature during sintering control , according to the manufacturer 's requirements, you can sintered to the surface 280 or less , or the manufacturers want any temperature , generally sintered to 230 degrees to 280 degrees. But its drawback is heated to 200 degrees slower rate , generally about one and a half or two minutes . Also in use, can not continue to maintain that at higher temperatures like ceramic heating element . Straightened hair slightly worse results .
  • chi hair straightener