Analyst Report: Why the meta manager matters for the connected car


The major transition happening for automobiles today is the internet’s ability to deliver a far more advanced driving experience. Vehicle drivers will move not only through physical reality but also through an illuminated internet: Specific points of interest most relevant to the driver will light up as the vehicle approaches them. An ever-shifting set of information will be prioritized for personal relevancy, timeliness, and proximity as the driver moves through space.

Current telematics efforts are technology-centric and target narrow niches: navigation, traffic, safety, entertainment, and so forth. By contrast, next-generation connected cars will be focused on the driver experience. Those niche applications will still play vital roles, but they will be subordinated to a new “meta manager” that will scan various car functions’ information, integrate it, and present the most relevant pieces when and where they are needed.

As the concept of a telematics meta manager catches on, we’ll see the following:

  • Tomorrow’s vehicle ecosystem will know where drivers are, and it will guess what they want and what they are doing as well as make unsolicited and appreciated recommendations.
  • Moving through an augmented reality will dominate moving through physical space in tomorrow’s vehicles long term.
  • Multiple incompatible ecosystems will emerge. For example, ecosystems will exist in different geographic regions.
  • The vendor that consistently provides the most relevant information will become the go-to platform.
  • Many automotive manufacturers will become more like suppliers of components, producing a mechanical vehicle and not the higher-value ecosystem.

Thumbnail image courtesy of Thinkstock

Table of Contents

  1. Summary
  2. Introduction: connected car fragmentation
  3. Missing in the stack: a meta manager
  4. The evolution of the meta manager and its implications
    1. Towards the virtual
    2. Integration to spawn ecosystems
    3. Luxury versus economy
    4. The payoff of telematics is uncertain
  5. Key takeaways
  6. About Martin Piszczalski
  7. About Gigaom Research

Join Gigaom Research! Become a subscriber and get reports like these, plus our collection of over 1,700 reports from world-class analysts for just $995 a year.