Ford Has Eyes On the 5G Road

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Ford, too, is planning for 5G in the car. The automaker plans to use Vehicle to Everything, or C-V2X. It allows cars to communicate hazards to other drivers, avoid traffic snarls, or even pay for drive-through orders. U.S. lawmakers have yet to approve C-V2X and the FCC has a pending rulemaking to allow C-V2X trials in spectrum set aside for automotive testing.  

Ford Motor Company announced at CES that starting in 2022, C-V2X will be a standard inclusion in its vehicles. Ford prefers C-V2X over the DSRC (Dedicated Short Range Communications) platform being developed by the government. General Motors Co. and Toyota Motor Corp. prefer DSRC, according to Industry Week. 

Don Butler, Ford’s executive director in charge of connected vehicle development, said emerging 5G technology is moving forward rapidly and is compatible with C-V2X use. According to Butler, DSRC units would require new, potentially expensive, infrastructure in order to operate optimally.

On committing to C-V2X, Butler stated, “Our hope is that this would spur others to potentially reassess and, in other cases, decide on this direction. We’ve been looking at DSRC for a number of years along with Toyota, GM and Honda, so this is not a step that we take lightly in the sense of dismissing DSRC. But we think this is the right step to make given where we see the technology headed.” Butler envisions a world where much of the driving would be left to the cars themselves. 

By installing C-V2X technology in its vehicle line-up, Ford would enable cars to communicate with each other, stationary points, and even individuals on cell phones. Thinking ahead, Butler said, “We have the opportunity to provide a wider field of view to autonomous vehicles. It could literally see around corners.” 

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