Vodafone and HERE to drive 5G automotive trials in Germany

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Vodafone Germany has teamed up with HERE Technologies to explore how autonomous cars can transmit and receive real-time data.

The companies announced at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) that they will test HERE’s HD Live mapping technology at Vodafone’s 5G Mobility Lab in Aldenhoven. HD Live collects real-time data on driving conditions from connected cars around the world to help drivers to manage their routes.

The partnership will explore the usage of the technology in autonomous vehicles and how 5G can be used to transmit data from cars. Details of specific trials were not disclosed.

Vodafone is also exploring how to integrate the Open Location Platform, HERE’s development environment for connected car applications, into its automotive offerings.

The operator will look to integrate HERE location services for other applications such as on-demand and automated waste management, connected parking, lighting and mobility.

Vodafone has been focusing on connectivity for car partners, such as Ford, and was also an early member of the 5G Automotive Association. In November it revealed it was providing telematics technology to UK insurance company Admiral for usage-based cover.

[Read more: Connected car market "to split in two", predicts Vodafone]

“To deal with [the] large amount of data transfer the deployment of superfast wireless connectivity is necessary,” said HERE in a blog post. “Germany and Europe will play a key role as the leaders of innovation in this key technology field.”

Connecting cars has been the major theme at CES, taking place this week in Las Vegas. Cisco announced a partnership with Hyundai to build a “hyperconnected” vehicle, while Intel announced two million BMW, Nissan and Volkswagen vehicles will use technology from its subsidiary Mobileye to build maps for future autonomous vehicles.

Qualcomm also announced new customers for its automotive solutions at the show, including Jaguar Land Rover.