Interview with: Freddie Geier, CEO Novero
Welcome to the Partnership! What are the reasons that have brought you to ERTICO?
ERTICO is well known in the market of Telematics due to its public-private partnerhip (PPP) activities regarding pan-European eCall deployment, ITS World Congress and promotion of technical concepts and specification towards standardisation. Novero decided to contribute to and benefit from these ERTICO activities as an automotive supplier with particular knowledge in Telecommunication and Automotive.
As on a first day of class: could you please introduce yourself?
Novero is an innovative, solid and reliable Tier-1 IVS (in vehicle system) supplier to the automotive industry, offering a broad variety of solutions for intelligent transportation systems and services. With an even higher concentration on the fusion of consumer electronics and automotive technologies, we want to help shape the future of the automotive industry.
In its German locations and with the contributions of its teams in Toronto/Canada and Bucharest/Romania, Novero develops, manufactures and markets flexible solutions for vehicle communication, telematics and mobile device integration. Our main focus is on modular control units (telematics gateways) for highly secure data transfer. The product portfolio is completed with comfort technologies for using mobile devices in the car.
What are the ITS trends that interest you the most?
As a recognized Tier-1 IVS supplier Novero is first of all interested in the final deployment of eCall across Europe and further enhancement of data communication. Since its foundation in year 2008 Novero is targeting smartphones integration and convenient usage of ITS services while driving. ITS trends of major interest are next generation eCall, advance map-enhanced driver assistance and autonomous driving supported by embedded and portable solutions.
Novero focuses on control units. What are they and why are they important in the deployment of the connected car?
Control units have a critical role in enabling the Connected Car. They act as a “trusted host” and data modem for different devices and sensors in the vehicle. They provide a highly secure exchange of data via the vehicle’s internal bus system or via the cloud. With the product line Dolphin, Novero offers a modular high-end telematics platform based on Linux which can be scaled from a simple Telematics Control Unit to a full featured Car Connectivity Platforms incl. local connectivity (e.g. WiFi Hotspot). Dolphin is able to manage all data exchanges from the car sensors to the mobile devices and to the cloud. And vice versa; Dolphin is the perfect embedded car modem.
With the Stingray product line, we produce an efficient telematics platform optimized for car-centric telematics services like eCall, Vehicle Tracking & Tracing, Remote Vehicle Control. Stingray is the combination of cost-efficient hardware components with robust connectivity technologies.
The other focus of Novero is the development of comfort technologies for using smartphones and tablets in the car. Would this not be distracting for the driver?
Novero is supporting non(less) distracting usage of smartphones and tablets in the car through intelligent integration of these portable devices into the car infotainment system. Its lasting experience in software ergonomics and particular emphasis on HMI development in the automotive environment enable Novero to design car integrated solutions for convenient and non(less) distracting usage of portables in the car. The driver will benefit from the usage of integrated consumer devices and according ITS and infotainment services.
From your close relations with OEMs, you need to be aware of all current trends in the sector. Could you give us a hint on what will be going on in 2015?
Novero will continue providing IVS products in the line-fit and aftermarket according to its customer requirements regarding eCall, Telematics and wireless charging needs.
Market trends of car connectivity and Internet in the car, the Novero core competences, describe obvious technology trends. In the light of Cooperative ITS (C-ITS), the eCall deployment, ownership of data, mobility services and appropriate business models still require further innovations, entrepreneurial spirit and social consensus.
The European Commission already set goals, i.e. policies, roadmaps and priorities, for the Future of “iMobility” building a competitive environment for the roll-out of cooperative intelligent transportation systems (C-ITS). Along these lines both public and private stakeholders are encouraged to focus on system concepts and open standards, support ITS system deployment and market development.
Novero recently participated in the International CES event in Las Vegas. If you could summarise your experience with a headline, what would you highlight?
Autonomous Cars are building an amazing field. Daimler F015 Luxury in Motion was one of the most impressive research vehicle presented in Vegas. This self-driving vehicle looks futuristic and in regards to security, it takes into account both the passengers and the environment. It monitors the surroundings in 360 degrees, using stereo cameras, radar and ultrasound sensors, and it actively communicates with the environment via large front and rear LED displays as well as by way of a front-facing laser projection system. Of course, this all looks pretty incredible.
Nevertheless I was under the impression that the most innovative impulses came from a handful of startups. My team spotted portable HUDs, WiFi solutions to secure one’s home, e-rollerskates, fitness apps and a lot of innovations to do with bicycles, like intelligent pedals.
All those inspired us to continue developing the connected car in 2015.
About Freddie Geier, CEO
Born in 1963, known for his entrepreneurial spirit and his ability to guide technology companies into the future. His product house strategy at Novero is supported by his extensive experience in hardware, software and mobile business and of course his Apple history. www.novero.com, www.freddiegeier.com