Hardware-Based Blockchain Car Wallets To Enable Future Mobility Solutions
Car sharing and vehicle fleet management are taking ever-new forms. Start-ups and Uber are flooding our city centres with electric scooters and bikes, while autonomous vehicles are just around the corner.
New car sharing models go from time-sharing, or ride-sharing of a vehicle to new logistics use cases that optimise each journey for each vehicle, for example where you transport another person’s luggage because you have room in your boot and they don’t.
Privately owned vehicles are used less than 5% of the time, whereas fleet managers typically aim for 70%, so there is plenty of room for optimisation.
The example of multiple firms dropping electric scooters on our streets shows another limitation. Travellers need to download an app for each brand and enter their private information multiple times. When details regarding a driving license is required, the process can be quite arduous. Sovereign identity is a central tenet of the blockchain world, and multiple KYC processes will be something of the past, very soon.
Disruptive services are already making mobility easier for all, reducing pollution and congestion and lowering insurance premiums.
In the future, if you are paying for the journey, you certainly don’t want to be bothered with paying separately for all its components such as fuel, parking, tolls let alone maintenance; the vehicles wallet will handle that for you.
A vehicle, with its own incorruptible identity can already have a date with you. When you reach the vehicle — or soon, when it reaches you — identification can be confirmed from a distance.
There is much more to come with Blockchain-certified data such as location or speed that we can use in case of accidents involving Autonomous Vehicles, for example. Probably nobody has ever bought a used car where the mileage hadn’t been tampered with. Certified mileage data that can be verified via blockchain will give you certainty.
This certified data is also used by car makers to improve safety and customer care. Analysis of the trusted data can identify patterns of breakdowns, for example, showing a weakness of a given part.
Trust in data is also essential for mobility as a service to emerge. Municipalities are often disappointed that new public transport systems don’t lower congestion as planned. People revert to their private vehicles for many reasons, but a key one is trust. If you had a very high degree of certainty that your car-share, bus or train was coming in precisely 10 minutes and that there was a seat for you, you would be easier to persuade to leave your car at home. Data must be certified.
With the end of fossil fuels in sight, electric vehicles, whether autonomous or not, are set to dominate. Access to charging stations must be flexible to cope with the ebbs and flows of traffic. One part of the solution can be to make it easy for anyone to offer a charging service, even from the solar power of their home installation. All that is required is a simple yet secure identification and an automated transaction to manage the compensation. Again, blockchain brings these features “out-of-the-box”. Variations on this theme include the possibility for cars to charge each other, say in a traffic jam via induction. In an area of dense population, car batteries can be used to help manage consumption peaks on the grid during extreme weather. Once again, the incorruptible identity brought by blockchain would be required to bring the trust needed for such a use case to be possible.
The real-time exchange of secure vehicle and traffic data between the vehicles themselves and smart city environments is a foundation for multi-modal transport scenarios of tomorrow.
Vehicles also need to transact autonomously, and blockchain technology is the solution of choice to enable the trust, transparency and data security that is needed to take our engineering culture to the next level.
In the future, every vehicle will require a car wallet solution with highly secure, industry-grade identity, turning the vehicle into a trusted data source and allowing it to autonomously perform secure transactions between customers, vehicles and other infrastructure.
Silicon Valley behemoths have already made inroads into the car UI with ‘Apple’s CarPlay or Googles Android Auto. Of course, they don’t want to stop there, and this throws down the gauntlet to the engineering culture in the automotive sector, challenging its agility and resilience. Cooperation is the only way for the automotive industry to offer viable alternatives. As luck would have it, Blockchain projects are all about industry cooperation.
Industrial ecosystems are forming to deliver industry-grade, hardware-based, end-to-end blockchain components to form the foundation for open, collaborative mobility services of the future, and the wallet is at the heart of this.
The link between safe data repositories and tamper-proof digital vehicle identity underlines the fundamental importance of ‘RIDDLE&CODE’s car wallet solutions, to enable this wide range of use cases.
Earlier this week Daimler revealed its long-term vision to over 1.500 experts in Stuttgart — on the stage of the most extensive European accelerator program Start-up Autobahn, powered by Plug and Play — as an example of how global players can leverage innovative blockchain solutions to show us ‘tomorrow’s business models today. RIDDLE&CODE was presented as the partner to develop Daimler’s first car wallet solution. We provide vehicle identity, trusted data provenance and a settlement layer as a core component of a Daimler-led Mobility Blockchain Platform.
Secure identity and tamper-proof data have, until now, been some of the missing elements preventing more disruptive mobility services from emerging. Based on its Secure Element 2.0, RIDDLE&CODE is now delivering those missing pieces in the form of our car wallet solution.
Post written by Ben Schwarz and Chris Haslwanter