At the Orange Business Summit held on April 18, French telecom company Orange outlined how it sees its 5G cellular technology enabling autonomous vehicles. Working in conjunction with Renault and Ericsson, the three companies aim to measure the capacity of 5G communications between autonomous vehicles and their environment, including other connected cars, highway infrastructure such as traffic lights and signals, etc. The consortium plans to test the system on a hybrid V2X (vehicle to anything) architecture, including by using “network slicing,” which is a feature of 5G that assigns a slice of network to a specific use.
5G connectivity will be critical for the advancements of autonomous vehicles, and in the U.S., will require a significant amount of collaboration between carmakers, governments, private landowners, and of course, telecom companies. As 5G is just now being rolled out in the U.S., it remains to be seen whether and when such collaborations will occur.