Summit Tech is unveiling the first Voice over LTE/Rich Communication Services (RCS)-capable Connected Car in collaboration with Alcatel-Lucent cloud and ultra-broadband technology, at the GSMA’s Innovation City showcase at Mobile World Congress 2015. The two companies will be demonstrating the transformational power of the service provider’s all-IP communications network on the Connected Car of the future.
With operators increasingly rolling out commercial VoLTE services across their 4G LTE networks, a new chapter in IP communication innovation expands the delivery of ultra-broadband services and enhanced service experiences. Based on a highly reliable virtualized IMS (IP Multimedia Subsystem) platform that comes equipped with APIs for rapid service creation, VoLTE’s high definition voice and rich communications can now be easily extended to the Connected Car.
In contrast to cars with only built-in LTE for Internet access, Summit Tech and Alcatel-Lucent will demonstrate how VoLTE/RCS enable the Connected Car itself to become a secondary device to complement a user’s smartphone. The Connected Car has call hand-over — seamlessly transferring calls to the car without any user interaction. Even if their smartphone battery dies, a user can continue the call from their car which behaves as an independent secondary telephony device.
The system works with Heads-Up Display systems in cars, so that users can view their calls, messages or data while keeping their eyes on the road and manage them using gesture control. Leveraging the power of Alcatel-Lucent’s IMS solution currently in operator’s networks and capable of supporting mobile and WiFi, the Connected Car brings occupants a full complement of communication services including support for VoLTE, video communications, IP messaging/chat and social presence to open up countless use cases.
For instance, the Connected Car can automatically advise a caller that the call is not private if there are other passengers in the car. The caller is then offered the option of leaving a message rather than being heard by all on the speaker phone. Once the driver is available for a private conversation, the system can prompt the caller to call back.
Another real-life example of the power of VoLTE/RCS-based vehicles can be applied to drive-thru restaurants. The driver can be automatically linked to the drive-thru attendant with a standard Android or Windows phone using an HD audio call, instead of the crackly drive-thru speakers. After the order is placed, confirmation and an electronic invoice are displayed on the car’s in-dash display. The driver can then complete a mobile commerce transaction to pay for their meal.
“By leveraging APIs exposing the rich functionality of today’s IP communication networks, communications as a service can be embedded into the Connected Car experience to provide on the go consumers and business users with personalized ultra broadband experiences,” Fran Heeran, General Manager of the IP Communications business at Alcatel-Lucent. “The Connected Car becomes yet another means by which operators can offer innovative services beyond the smartphone and enter new vertical markets to leverage their investments in LTE networks and VoLTE services.”
“We don’t need any more fragmentation across voice, messaging and data systems,” commented Alido Di Giovanni, President of Summit Tech. “Closed systems are not helpful to the progression of Connected Cars. With this ecosystem, operators can finally be at the heart of Connected Cars, as they should be. They can be the ones that provide the disruption and the innovation in this market. And consumers can benefit from a system that works seamlessly across car manufacturers, operating systems and carrier networks.”