We are quickly moving towards the future of automobiles where even cars will have internet access and they’ll be able to send and receive data to each other over the internet. Softbank, a Japanese mobile carrier, and Honda have recently signed a partnership in which both companies will research on connected cars and the cars will use Softbank’s 5G technology to communicate.
5G network will be a lot faster and stable than the current 4G network. Connected cars will need a more stable network to communicate with each other because cars move at high speed and a stable connection is required to communicate at high speed. Honda will start testing its cars in Hokkaido and Softbank will set up the 5G communication system in their cars. Honda will first check if the connection is stable enough to communicate at high speed and then will implement it in their cars. Softbank says that it will put enough antennas on Honda’s cars to make the connection stable enough.
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Both companies will start testing the connected cars in 2018 and Softbank plans to bring 5G network to the public by 2020 and both companies plan to launch the stabilized versions of connected cars by 2025. Softbank will also expand its connectivity in rural areas so that the cars can communicate anywhere they go. However, the initial tests will be held in Urban areas only.
Softbank is also investing in some ridesharing platforms. Like recently it has invested $1 billion in Uber which is valued at around $70 billion right now. This is one of the few good news for Uber this year as it has faced several lawsuits this year. Here’s what Uber had to say on the investment.
“We’ve entered into an agreement with a consortium led by SoftBank and Dragoneer on a potential investment. We believe this agreement is a strong vote of confidence in Uber’s long-term potential. Upon closing, it will help fuel our investments in technology and our continued expansion at home and abroad, while strengthening our corporate governance.”
Softbank has also invested in some other ride-hailing services as well including Singapore’s Grab, India’s Ola and China’s Didi. There’s one thing to note here that Honda is also an investor in Singapore’s Grab car-hailing service. All of these investments show Softbank’s interest in cars.