FN Media Group Presents Oilprice.com Market Commentary
The "internet-of-things" is here. From smartphones to any number of connected devices may laying around the house, it is becoming a part of daily life. In fact, It's forecast that over 64 billion devices will be connected to the internet in just a few years' time...in a market that's expected to grow over $2.4 trillion annually by 2027. Still, that number is going to continue to climb. And nowhere is the impact of this new technology more apparent than in the automotive industry. With the introduction of 5G networks, the potential for new innovations in transportation is enormous. Mentioned in today's commentary includes: General Motors Company (NYSE: GM), Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F), Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ: MSFT), Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOGL), Intel Corporation (NASDAQ: INTC).
People across the globe can already order a cab with the click of a button. Or hop on a bicycle parked on a street corner...But what's next? And how will the emergence of the tech that's already in development change the way we get around?
This is where companies like Facedrive (FD.V; FDVRF) are looking to gain an edge over the competition. They've already re-imagined ride-sharing, providing a cutting edge carbon-offset alternative to the giants of the industry, Uber and Lyft...But now they're looking to challenge the notion of car ownership as we know it.
Teslas "On Demand"
With Facedrive's acquisition of Steer, a subscription-based electric vehicle business, you can now order a Tesla, Porsche, or Audi EV that will be personally delivered directly to you with leases as short as 1 month. Not only does this mean users can enjoy the quality and luxury of these top-tier brands, but they can also drive a fully-insured electric vehicle when you want it, without having to worry about an asset that loses most of its value as soon as you drive it off the lot.
This simple concept effectively allows users the ability to lease any number of vehicles without committing to - or paying an outrageous upfront cost for - one specific car. And this is an important move. The younger generations just aren't interested in owning...things they can easily get without owning.
Subscription services have taken over most everything. From fashion and hygiene to media consumption. And even housing. The new generations want convenience, freedom, and variety. This is why Facedrive's acquisition is so well-timed...
We've already seen the headlines ...
"Millennials Turn Their Back On Car Ownership"
"Millennials Say They'd Give Up Their Cars Before Their Computers or Cell Phones"
"The Reasons Why Millennials Aren't As Car Crazed As Baby Boomers"
And Facedrive saw this coming a mile away. Now, all users need to do is open up the Steer App and pick which luxury electric vehicle they'd like to take out for a spin. It is not just transforming the idea of car ownership...It's paving the way for what is to come.
The Crossroads Of Two Multi-Trillion Dollar Trends
Data has already replaced oil as the world's most valuable asset, but what comes next will kick the tech revolution into high gear.
Remember when GPS was a cutting edge piece of technology, limited to only the newest, and most-high-end vehicles? Now 98% of new cars hitting the road in 2020 have internet connectivity. This is important because of the tremendous amount of data that is flowing from each and every one of these new vehicles.
This data will help improve the consumer experience in ways we cannot yet imagine. Not only will we be able to reduce traffic...We'll be able to slash accident rates and even improve comfort within the vehicle. But most significantly, it's the first step towards completely autonomous vehicles. And this is why early-movers in the automotive data scene like Facedrive (FD.V; FDVRF) could win big in the coming years.
From Your Smartphone To Your Door
If the world thought ride-sharing was revolutionary. Think about what's next. What was only a sci-fi dream a few years ago could soon be our reality.
We've all imagined of future where we would hop into our self-driving car and read a book or watch our favorite series on the way to work...But what if we don't have to even own the car?
Why in the world would we voluntarily go out and purchase a Tesla and absorb all of the financial responsibilities that come with that when we could just whip out our smartphone and within minutes, an autonomous luxury vehicle would pick us up from wherever we are?
This is part of the reason we think Facedrive's plan is so brilliant. Its carbon-offset ride-sharing business is already turning heads...And with the introduction of its Steer subscription-based luxury electric vehicle service, it's positioned itself perfectly as a front-runner in this futuristic transportation market. A market that may wind up arriving faster than expected.
Though tremendous progress has already been made towards self-driving vehicles, there's still a ways to go. There are regulatory hurdles, negative public perception, and a few technological barriers still in the way. But that doesn't mean they aren't coming. And the 5G revolution will be the first catalyst.
Jeremy Carlson, an autonomy analyst with auto-industry research firm IHS Markit explained, "With a better and more robust network, you'll have longer detection ranges for other vehicles and incidents and have lots of different types of information pumped into the system," adding, "There's real value there in terms of how it can make driving better and more efficient."
And he's not wrong. As Big Data, the internet of things, and a transportation revolution converge, a whole new realm of possibilities will emerge in what we can do, how we can do it, and how it will transform our world for the better.
Smartphones are already more powerful than vintage supercomputers that took up entire rooms just a few decades ago. And technology is only moving faster and faster.
Innovative young companies like Facedrive (FD.V; FDVRF) see this, and are ready to help roll out the green-powered autonomous transportation of the future.
Not to be outdone, however, traditional automakers are racing alongside of Big Tech to get ahead of this futuristic trend, as well. From GM and Ford to tech giants like Microsoft, Google and Intel, some of the most exciting breakthroughs in this industry are already coming to fruition.
Leading the charge is Waymo, a subsidy of tech giant Alphabet Inc. (GOOGL). Waymo may just be the de facto leader in the emerging autonomous vehicle industry. It's already had cars driving themselves across the United States for several years. In fact, in Arizona alone, Alphabet's self-driving cars have logged over 6.1 million miles. To put that in perspective, that means that Alphabet's autonomous cars have driven the distance between New York City and San Francisco over 2100 times. Or, as the company explains, "over 500 years of driving for the average licensed US driver." Even more impressive, however, the vehicles were only involved in 47 "contact events", and the vast-majority of the collisions were the result of human error and none resulted in any sort of severe injury for anyone involved.
While these tests are extremely promising for Alphabet's Waymo, there are still some hurdles to overcome. First and foremost, these lengthy trials took place in Pheonix, a city not exactly known for extreme weather. Second, an issue that may frustrate many drivers, the vehicles operated in a sort of hyper-cautious mode, driving at slower speeds and taking sometimes unnecessary precautions to avoid conflict.
While Alphabet's Waymo gets a lot of credit for these massive accomplishments, a widely loved and wildly popular chipmaker is at its core. Intel Corporation (INTC) and Waymo teamed up way back in 2017, and have worked together to fine tune their technology together ever since. Through their mutual knowledge of hardware and software, the tech giants have made leaps and bounds towards building the car of the future.
In addition to its efforts with Waymo, Intel has also been on the forefront of developing its own artificial intelligence and vision hardware. Back in 2017, it acquired MobileEye, a supplier of camera-based chips and software to the global mobile industry. And now, in a new deal with Luminar, another emerging tech company on the forefront of this movement, Intel is positioning itself as its own giant of this new sector.
Another giant, Microsoft (MSFT) is also getting into the game. Microsoft's Azure cloud-based infrastructure and edge computing is going to be pivotal in this new industry. Not only will it allow automakers to analyze data and optimize their products, it will give them the opportunity to conduct advanced tests and simulations to fine-tune their software in risk-free environments. It's even partnering with leaders in the auto industry such as Renault and Audi.
Mark Everest, Information Systems Development Manager, Renault Sport Formula One Team noted, "There are so many factors that are constantly changing and can affect race strategy: track temperature, tire performance, what the other drivers are doing. Simulation helps us quickly understand how to configure the car for a particular track."
Traditional automakers aren't going to be left behind, either. Both Ford and GM are betting big on this emerging new industry.
In October, auto industry legend, General Motors (GM), announced that it's majority-owned subsidiary, Cruise, has just received approval from the California DMV to test its autonomous vehicles without a driver. And while they're not the first to receive such an approval, it's still huge news for GM.
Cruise CEO Dan Ammann wrote in a Medium post, "Before the end of the year, we'll be sending cars out onto the streets of SF -- without gasoline and without anyone at the wheel. Because safely removing the driver is the true benchmark of a self-driving car, and because burning fossil fuels is no way to build the future of transportation."
Ford (F) for its part, has recently revealed plans to launch its self-driving business in 2022. The new vehicles, in partnership with Argo AI, a Philadelphia-based autonomous vehicle startup, will include major upgrades from advanced Lidar technology and high resolution cameras. Ford plans to test these vehicles in Austin, Texas; Detroit; Miami; Palo Alto, California; Pittsburgh and Washington, D.C. as early as this month.
John Davis, chief engineer of Ford's autonomous vehicle subsidiary explained, "We're confident that we're on the path to launching a safe, reliable and affordable service. And, we look forward to telling you more about how this service will ultimately help make people's lives better."
By. Scott Reynolds
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Forward looking statements in this publication include that Facedrive will be able to expand to the US and Europe; that transport in an EV will become much more popular and that Facedrive will be able to carry out its business plans. These forward-looking statements are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events or results to differ materially. Risks that could change or prevent these statements from coming to fruition include that riders are not as attracted to EV rides as expected; that competitors may offer better or cheaper alternatives to the Facedrive businesses; Facedrive's ability to obtain and retain necessary licensing in each geographical area in which it operates; and whether markets justify additional expansion. The forward-looking information contained herein is given as of the date hereof and we assume no responsibility to update or revise such information to reflect new events or circumstances, except as required by law.
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