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Highlights from the Deloitte Smart Mobility, Smart Cities, Smarter Asia Pacific Sessions at CES Asia

More than 500 industry professionals attended the Deloitte Smart Mobility, Smart Cities, Smarter Asia Pacific forum on 14 June at CES Asia. A packed house heard senior executives from companies at the vanguard of the mobility and smart city ecosystem share their insights on how autonomous driving technology will reshape the mobility landscape, and how players in the ecosystem can collaborate to build smarter cities. The audience represented multiple segments of the smart mobility and smart city ecosystem, from traditional OEMs, new energy vehicle (NEV), technology companies and mobility solutions providers to intelligent network and smart city planning and operations players. Below are the key takeaways and videos for Deloitte sessions.

Panel takeaways:

An automaker’s view on smart mobility

Moderator: Deloitte National Industry Program Leader John Hung

Panelists: Byton President and Co-Founder Dr. Daniel Kirchert

Traditional vehicles focus more on performance, control and speed. But in the future, the focus will be on making the driving experience meaningful by bringing in useful functions, human-car interaction and cutting-edge technology solutions. China’s auto supply chain is ready for this next revolution, especially in platform development and AI technologies. China does not lack determination or capital. With the government's desire for vehicle electrification, there is no doubt China will maintain its position as the largest EV market in the world.

In-vehicle digital interfaces can be redefined through the following efforts: eliminating all complicated physical buttons, introducing touch screens and facial recognition systems, as well as a whole new interface that allows drivers or consumers to seamlessly transfer their smartphone experience to their cars.

Implementing smart mobility in smart cities

Moderator: Deloitte Global Transportation Sector Leader Simon Dixon

Panelists:

  • Voom Chief Product Officer  Evan Tahler
  • Huawei Technologies Director of Smart Cities Yang Lizhi

A city is an organism, not an isolated system. Operations and management issues around technology, products and systems in building a smart city cannot be managed by a single company. Instead, they require a virtuous cycle combining the data from transportation, medical and energy systems, and integrating various stakeholders.

Since 2016, China's government has been pushing the construction of smart cities. The top-down strategic design, as well as development evaluation metrics, have been completed. Chinese consumers, especially younger generations, have a higher acceptance and recognition of new technologies. Compared to other countries, China's market is more open to new technologies.

Cyber security is one of the keys to building a smart city, and an area where China has been intensifying its efforts in legislation and supervision. Despite the growing desire and appeal of data sharing, the Chinese government is still reluctant to loosen regulations. China needs to urgently break data boundaries to realize synergy and integration to achieve data-based decision making and innovation. To ensure data security, technology should be basic with a comprehensive support system.

Are consumers ready for autonomous vehicles?

Moderator: Deloitte China Risk Advisory Partner Alice Yu

Panelists:

  • Deloitte China Automotive Leader Marco Hecker
  • Leapmotor Founder and Chairman Zhu Jiangming
  • Aptiv Vice President of Advanced Safety and User Experience, Asia Pacific, Frank Wang

The wide adoption of autonomous driving (L4) will substantially reduce the average commuting time for urban residents as well as the emissions of vehicles on the road. It will also improve the safety of vehicle mobility, which is beneficial to consumers and society as a whole. However, the business model for autonomous driving is still at an early stage, with different degrees of acceptance and driving behaviors in each country. In the future, the major buying power for vehicles will no longer reside with individual consumers, but with enterprises or even governments, who will adopt a fleet management model.

According to Deloitte's 2018 global consumer study, compared to other countries, Chinese consumers are more trustful and accepting of autonomous driving technology (74%). At the same time, they trust new technology companies that specialize in self-driving vehicles the most when it comes to bringing fully self-driving technology to market.

The challenge of implementing autonomous driving lies in its demand for massive data processing, consistent and stable battery technology, safety and reliability. The technology will require the reconstruction of existing transportation infrastructure, and simulate human being's driving behaviour under different traffic conditions. In China, there are no absolute giants in 5G, V2V or V2X technologies, creating a great opportunity for internet companies to become involved, define the market and establish standards.

Connected vehicles operating in connected ecosystems

Moderator: Deloitte China Consulting Partner Andy Zhou

Panelists:

  • Banma Network CEO Hao Fei
  • Audi China Director of Digital Business Hans Lippert
  • Ingeek General Manager Han Yi
  • Alibaba Cloud Chief Architect for Smart Mobility Cheng Liwei

Smart mobility is mainly focused on digitalization, urbanization, and sustainability, looking at the operation of an entire city as well as fairness and efficiency to maximize transport efficiency for everyone. Achieving ecological connectivity is a must to realize the advent of autonomous driving. At the V2V connection stage, a truly autonomous operating system is required, with an integrated digital-physical solution based on in-vehicle experience and services, connecting accounts and payments to consumer's daily digital life.

Data in a single dimension and single channel is useless – only network synergy effect can create greater value. Whether a consumer is willing to pay for in-vehicle networking service is not a metric on which to evaluate the business model's sustainability. Free upgrades and value-added services can enhance users' stickiness and activity, but it's only through promoting services based on real-time scenarios that business value can be created.

Exploring the promise of smart cities

Moderator: Deloitte China Smart City Leader Clare Ma

Panelists:

  • Sugon CEO Guan Hongming
  • Shanghai Data Exchange Corp Vice President Tony Chen

China has a head start in the exploration of smart city concepts, led by the government in all aspects of development. The overall appeal is refined urban management, and new challenges will arise for enterprises and government. Smart city solutions should focus on the major concerns of managers in different fields and promote customized scenarios to help cities save resources, and create a more modern and smarter living environment for residents.

Building a smart city should start with a master plan and top-down strategic design, then the construction of cloud computing and big data platforms. Government should lead and manage public sentiment, a city's overall operation and industry development to promote the upgrading and transformation of industries, as well as achieve sustainable urban development. Smart cities are a grand and infinite mission which cannot be accomplished by any single enterprise or organization independently. Companies of diverse scale have different advantages and responsibilities. Cooperation between the government and enterprises should be strengthened to form an effective system.

Deloitte Auto Sector Leader Media Interview: Insights on Autonomous Driving Vehicles Trends

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