IoT / #MCS2014: Bentley eyes big data benefits of connected cars ‘covered in sensors’
#MCS2014: Bentley eyes big data benefits of connected cars ‘covered in sensors’
16 October 2014
Bentley sees big data as the most valuable part of a connected car.
The Cheshire-based car manufacturer said that data collected by its latest range of luxury cars could be sold to marketing agencies.
David Turner, infotainment engineer at Bentley, said: “Our cars are covered in sensors and the amount of data that we have is huge. We know if it’s raining outside, whether it’s dark or light, how fast you are going – and we can sell that data to companies and governments.”
Turner said that more consumer-focused aspects of the connected car were problematic for the luxury marque.
Which websites to install as standard, and how to ensure connectivity as a car moves from one 3G telecoms footprint to another, were just some of the headaches, said Turner.
“Will Facebook still be going in 60 years’ time? Nobody knows,” said Turner. “Remember, we are still servicing cars going back to the 50s.”
Because Bentley sells all over the world it has to be mindful of local tastes. Google may be the dominant search engine in the West but Baidu is popular in China while Yandex is the market leader in Russia.
Enabling a car to stay connected between countries as it travels cross-continent is another headache.
Turner admitted that the mobile world was not natural territory for a car company such as Bentley. It takes between two or three years to develop a car compared to six months for an app.
The average Bentley customer is 53 and male, compared to mid-30s for China, where would-be turn up waving cash at car shows.
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