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Designing a future-ready vehicle is no easy feat. Building one, demands comprehensive knowledge of vehicle architecture, expertise in software development, and the competence to integrate both. More importantly, for such software-driven vehicles to function efficiently post- launch, the software must be regularly updated — remotely and Over-the-Air (OTA).

While OEMs are still developing such capabilities, certain trends testify why widespread OTA adoption will become the next big thing:

Shift from discrete to domain to central computing architecture: Statistics peg most vehicle architectures will support High-Performance-Computing (HPC)1 by 2030. Also, it is predicted that OEMs will establish in-house capabilities in the fields of application software, functions and services, and semiconductor know-how.2

OTA as a foundational feature of vehicle architecture: With connectivity expected to reach between USD 450-750 Bn by 20303, software-driven vehicles must be updatable for better functioning. OTA’s versatility may transform it into a data pipe for other applications and a potential channel for data monetization/revenue4 for OEMs.

Non-uniform OTA adoption rates: All OEMs today, are at different stages of the OTA adoption curve but unstinted focus remains on domain and central computing.

Such trends point to considerable advantages for all stakeholders when OTA updates get implemented:

Figure 1- Intended benefits of OTA to Stakeholders

Though OTA accelerates building of software-driven vehicles, the market is set to grow to 79% of vehicles sold worldwide by 20255 and is compliant with cybersecurity regulations, leverages changing architecture and innovative business models, the rate of adoption is slow.

This is attributed to prevalent deep-seated notions:

Figure 2- Common notions on OTA adoption

  • Difficulty in sourcing end-to-end OTA solution: OTA has multiple components – Cloud, Onboard vehicle, Software integration, Services – sourced from different suppliers rather than one comprehensive solution from a single entity.
  • Challenges to integration due to multiple partners: This is especially true where components differ in quality, or spare parts may not be easily available but can be resolved by experienced and expert partners.
  • OTA updates are regular features for automobiles: OTA is now at the core of vehicle architecture with other elements dependent on it, and must be dealt with accordingly with relevant domain knowledge.
  • Lack of robust partnerships to implement vehicle architecture: Lopsided understanding of vehicle architecture and the domain can be overcome by partnering with a strong and experienced transformation collaborator6.
  • Mastering infotainment updates equals mastering OTA updates: OEMs equate OTA updates for the IVI or content with entire vehicle updates however, OTA touches upon multiple and more mission-critical domains — Powertrain, Gateways, Body Control, Autonomous etc. – and is therefore both broader and deeper in scope.
  • Impossibility of implementing OTA for the existing vehicle without unsettling many things: In cases of vehicles with a defined architecture, too, it’s possible to introduce OTA without disturbing other components.
However, with OEMs being at different stages of OTA adoption, there are a variety of key challenges they face today:

Figure 3- Key challenges

  • Business-related factors: Time-to-market an OTA solution, its scalability and cost of implementation can make or break businesses. Improper attention to this has led to OEMs today struggling with rising vehicle recall rates7 due to flawed software and missed launch dates.
  • Regulatory factors: Homologation and compliance with emerging regulations, such as the WP29 SUMS8 become critical as OTA solutions pervade a fast-transforming automotive ecosystem.
  • Trend monetisation: It’s important to comprehend the software environment to deliver a connected experience to customers9 . OEMs are unable to incorporate plans for enhanced revenue generation from the time of conception of vehicle architecture and design.
  • Vehicle architecture: OEMs are equally challenged by new-age vehicle architecture and the requirements of emerging software. This balancing act demands an experienced and robust collaborator. Inadequate knowledge or expertise in the field leads to flawed partnerships.
  • In-Vehicle software technology: It’s imperative to understand the intricacies of software Variant and Dependency management along with updating entire vehicle software, whether these will function in the field, if they will impact other components in cases where architecture is already defined etc.
  • Integration: Variations in component quality, absence of technical knowhow to resolve issues as they arise and the inability to integrate all components or ascertain responsibility for integration also pose significant hurdles.

Since the technology to download software onto a vehicle has matured, questions today revolve around bigger issues – the application of updates, downloading correct packages, determining compatibilities with vehicle configuration, state and type, ensuring the efficacy and efficiency of the quantum of update delivered and any other implementational impact. The incessant shift toward centrally controlled architecture may make integration more software-centric, thereby, complicating abilities to anticipate, visualise and verify. Naturally then, the challenges will exceed basic software update mechanisms.

However, such hurdles may be overcome through partnerships with strong, experienced transformation collaborators. That’s where KPIT comes in.

KPIT and OTA

With 20+ years of experience in software integration and expertise in vehicle architecture, KPIT is a preferred partner for many OEMs to accelerate and drive their OTA adoption.

KPIT’s OTA solution for the entire vehicle, both On-board and In-Cloud, is secure, efficient and production-ready.

Figure 4- KPIT, your transformation partner to accelerate OTA adoption

Highlights of KPIT’s OTA solution:

  • On-board technology comprises the Software Download Manager, OTA Orchestrator, Update Configuration Manager, DPDU Library and the Bootloader.
  • Cloud-side focus on Campaign Management and Software Dependency Management to capture all hardware and software dependencies and their versions.
  • Implemented across over 5 mn10 vehicles for Infotainment ECUs and 8 mn11 Dual Bank Flash ECUs, the solution also caters to the Bootloader, Gateways, Body Control ECUs in other vehicles.
  • Proven capabilities to perform software, firmware, content and application updates, while supporting comprehensive Delta and Dual Bank/In place updates for non-POSIX/small ECUs. Robust Bootloader to undertake background updates for Body, Engine and Chassis Control Modules.
  • Expertise across core architecture consulting, software integration services, platform customization, integration and end-to-end OTA testing.

KPIT’s OTA solution’s in-vehicle software components including the Bootloader and smaller ECUs based on Classic AUTOSAR or a POSIX operator have proven competence. With its DPDU Library in series production with European OEMs, other OTA components in series production with various mainstream passenger car OEMs, and their Cloud catering to the Asian and Indian markets for commercial vehicles, KPIT is set to transform the automotive ecosystem.

“Capable of performing full-vehicle updates, KPIT’s Over-the-Air (OTA) solution addresses domain controllers from Digital Cockpit to e-Powertrain; and has successfully updated around 8 million controllers till date. KPIT’s OTA Update technology has already powered 5+ million vehicles, with another 11+ million vehicles under contract. Bringing to the table a production- grade mature solution, in-depth understanding of vehicle and software architecture, and expertise in software integration, KPIT is a transformation partner to OEMs, helping accelerate OTA adoption.”
Omkar Panse, Vice President & Head – Digital Connected Solutions at KPIT

The Road Ahead

Strengthen, accelerate and integrate the Cloud with the Build and Configuration Management Systems: KPIT’s strength lies in in-vehicle software that supports the Infotainment segment and the Service-oriented Architecture (SoA) based on Adaptive Autosar. Of late, focus has centred on developing the Cloud to accelerate and align solutions with the requirements of next-generation complexities in Campaign and Dependency Management and now, WP.29 compliance.

KPIT is a Microsoft ‘Co-sell partner’ for its Over-the-air Software Update solution, certified and optimized to run on the Azure Cloud platform. Their OTA solution integrates Azure Services — Azure IoT Hub, Azure Storage Services, Azure’s support for Containers & Container Management Services. Key tenets — reliability, scalability, high availability and security are achieved by building on the core building blocks of Azure Platform Services.

Develop recordkeeping: When undertaken across the lifecycle of software development workflows, code maturity testing evidence, signing of packages, functional safety compliance, it will eventually feed into the impact of software updates in terms of approvals.

Accelerate transition to full WP.29 Software Update Management System (SUMS)-compliant solution for OEMs.

“Flexible and strong OTA solutions are a must-have for automakers today. The increasing reliance on essential capabilities delivered purely in software and the rapid pace of change in the industry makes adopting a coherent OTA solution for all vehicle lines a decision that can no longer be deferred. The progression towards in-vehicle edge, zonal architectures, in-vehicle HPC and software-defined vehicle further amplifies this foundational need. KPIT’s comprehensive end-to-end solution for OTA provides a practical and effective way for OEMs to address this requirement while leveraging the inherent strength and security of the Azure platform.”
John Stenlake, Director – Vehicle Innovation & Mobility at Microsoft Corporation

Conclusion

The global OTA updates market — valued at USD 2,422.6 Million (2020) and expected to grow at a CAGR of 19.5% by 203012 — presents a huge opportunity for different stakeholders. KPIT with considerable domain experience, software-integration expertise and a robust OTA solution is well- poised to catapult its partners into a new era of automotive mobility.

Figure 5– KPIT’s Next-generation OTA Update solution

Reference

1. https://www.wsj.com/articles/SB10001424053111903480904576512250915629460

2. https://www2.deloitte.com/us/en/insights/focus/future-of-mobility/pure-play-software-in-automotive-
industry.html

3. https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/automotive-and-assembly/our-insights/accelerating-the-car-data-
monetization-journey

4. https://www.counterpointresearch.com/automakers-generate-additional-revenues-connected-vehicles/

5. https://www.eetimes.com/ota-software-updates-changes- ahead/?utm_campaign=EE%20Times%20Article%20Campaign_mailer.html&utm_medium=email&utm_source= Eloqua#

6. https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/automotive-and-assembly/our-insights/automotive-software-and-electrical- electronic-architecture-implications-for-oems

7. https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/automotive-and-assembly/our-insights/rewiring-car-electronics-and-
software-architecture-for-the-roaring-2020s

8. https://unece.org/DAM/trans/doc/2020/wp29grva/ECE-TRANS-WP29-2020-079-Revised.pdf

9. https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/automotive-and-assembly/our-insights/setting-the-framework-for-car-
connectivity-and-user-experience

10. This covers different aspects of OTA software tech KPIT provides. 5 Mn comes from KPITs Stack where the integrated Library (of a partner company) does the basic process of Delta reconstruction and the entire flashing of the IVI ECU, Peripheral chipsets etc.

11. This covers other ECUs outside IVI unit that have been flashed using KPIT provided tech like the Bootloader or the UDS Library which is used to flash other ECUs over the CAN Bus.

12. https://www.psmarketresearch.com/market-analysis/automotive-over-the-air-ota-updates-market



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