The future of a driver-less car remains uncertain. However, automakers are working in alliance with other companies to give their buyers a driver-less experience. The second largest US wireless operator AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) joined forces with Sirius XM Radio Inc (NASDAQ:SIRI) and entered into a deal to work on an Onstar-like telematics system for Nissan cars. The telecom provider would give mobile connectivity to Sirius XM Radio Inc (NASDAQ:SIRI) telematics system and incorporate in Nissan’s North American cars to provide better security services in the car. Several features are expected to come along with Nissan’s vehicles lineup in the near future.
Let’s take a closer look as to what all can we expect in the next Leaf or Altima.
Smarter cars in the making
Sirius XM Radio Inc (NASDAQ:SIRI) has an agreement with Nissan to provide robust features for its cars with a range of services that include weather forecast, navigation, traffic assessment and other similar features. In fact, telematic services have advanced much more and all this is routed through data connection. This is exactly where Sirius needs AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T)’s network. Pricing of the telematic suite has not been announced yet.
The telematic solutions in cars would add safety, provide emergency assistance in accidents and other mishaps, track vehicles in case they are stolen, other roadside support, offer voice enabled technology and several infotainment services not announced yet. Glenn Lurie, President at AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) defined future vehicles as ‘smartphones with four wheels’ that would provide owners with a safer journey and brilliant customer experience. Nissan cars powered by Sirius XM Radio Inc (NASDAQ:SIRI)’s integrated telematics solutions using the Dallas carrier’s built-in internet services, would offer drivers and passengers the experience of a connected car.
Connected vehicles would be able to communicate with one another, which will help in avoiding mishaps. Such cars would be able to assess traffic conditions on the road, spot if there is any maintenance needed, and even connect to Wifi hotspots. Sirius is working to merge cellular network connectivity with satellite to widen the variety of in-vehicle telematic services and innovative features to the drivers. Sirius and AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) are not the only ones to partner for incorporating such services in Nissan cars.
Another connected carmaker
General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) partnered with Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) to work on the Onstar service. However, early this year, the lead US automaker replaced Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ) with AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) for its high speed wireless service. The Detroit carmaker expects car sales to increase on account of Onstar service as the automaker plans to expand services by providing advanced application.
Phil Abram, Chief Executive of General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) declined to comment on why the company switched from Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) to AT&T for wireless services. The Onstar deal is one of the biggest agreements for AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T). The telecom provider has lately been particularly aggressive to strike such deals in order to diversify as the wireless market is getting saturated and competition from smaller rivals is getting tougher.
While AT&T looks pretty focused in working out ways to drive its revenue growth to keep investors happy, how important is the partnership for Sirius XM Radio Inc (NASDAQ:SIRI)?