Automotive apps to reach $1.7 billion, is cars the next big platform?

On sister site TelecomsTech we spoke to Telefónica’s Pavan Mathew on “connected cars” and how carriers plan to support the rise in automotive apps; both in infrastructure and services.

Forecasts today by ABI research point revenue to hitting nearly $1.7 billion globally by 2018.


Car manufacturers are consistently looking how they can entice customers away from the competition and offer a unique, unparalleled experience. One of the most promising aspects are the cars infotainment systems; offering a unique opportunity to jump ahead of the competition.

Gareth Owen, principal analyst at ABI Research, says: “Car OEMs now increasingly see infotainment as a key differentiator in their cars. We predict a sharp growth in the adoption of connected car infotainment systems over the next few years, with apps being the main driver, as for the iPhone.”

It’s not just traditional automotive OEM’s looking to get into the game either, but also companies including Apple who recently launched their “Eyes Free” system which utilises Siri’s natural-voice recognition to control the car’s infotainment system and offer a familiar experience.

Nemesis Google is also making perhaps the biggest play into the market, self-driving cars.

The total number of applications downloaded in cars is expected to jump from 12 million at end of 2012 to 4.3 billion at end of 2018, it’s little surprise all the major automotive and technology players are looking ahead to keep their hand firmly in the game.

Currently there are many connected cars on the market which have yet to hit their “boom” period and seen very little in terms of growth or generating revenues through current monthly subscriptions.

General Motor’s OnStar and Ford’s SYNC are two of the most obvious examples of these kinds of platforms, both fantastic systems which are yet to gain wide-appeal.

The whole industry is currently in thought how to best deliver these services, from both network carriers and manufacturers perspectives. In the interview with Pavan Mathew he spoke of perhaps subsidising the monthly fee; or even through advertising, but he was wary of the latter solution.

What are your thoughts on the future of “connected cars” and automotive applications?

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28 Jun 2013, 1:58 p.m.

AMAZING! Makes sense with folks spending so much time communting. Will there also be an inflated market for the "classics?"