Francisco Jariego, a member of the Innovation Council of IFI, and Totti Könnölä, CEO of Insight Foresight Institute (IFI), write in Cinco Días (one of the leading economic journals in Spain) about the transformation in the automotive industry driven by technological advances and the platform economy.
Smartphones have opened the possibility of sharing vehicles in a simple way. Uber and others have developed platforms that connect drivers and passengers, making it possible to find a driver or share a car with just a one click. These companies are pushing for a change in the patterns of private car use, which will have important consequences.
The electric vehicle is reaching the levels of autonomy and cost that make it competitive with the vehicles of internal combustion. Tesla has strongly encouraged the development of this type of vehicle with a huge investment in the production of electric batteries and a coordinated bet on the development of solar energy.
The autonomous vehicle begins to be accepted as a real possibility in a not too distant future. After years of investing in the technologies that will make a driverless vehicle possible, what began as a highly speculative bet from Google (a moonshot) is, since late 2016, a new business unit, Waymo, under the umbrella of Alphabet.