Some years back, the only function that AI (Artificial Intelligence) had in relation to automobiles was booking car services such as Uber and the likes; the scene has come a long way since then. In modern times, the function of AI in vehicles has gotten more intrinsic and intuitive. AI goes beyond driverless-cars; it helps us stay connected (Internet of Things), helps maintain schedules and helps make the car more secure.
In terms of revenue, the AI segment in the auto industry is estimated to cross 10.73 billion dollars by the year 2024. That’s how huge the role of AI in manufacturing and providing cloud services is. The rise of AI tech will impact the lives of auto-owners, auto-manufacturers and auto-service providers, let’s see how.
AI DRIVING MODES
Driver Assist Mode
A test drive is not a concept that is foreign to the automotive industry. It is only natural that driver assist is the first step towards full AI automation. Drive Assist functions more as co-pilot. The functionality aids the driver and helps cover the blind spots. Through various sensors and real-life data collection, the AI can identify certain threats, and take measures to ensure the safety of the driver and the passengers in the car.
Auto Emergency Braking is a feature most high-end cars come equipped with. The reflexes of an AI software sometimes outdo that of a human and can be life-saving. The Rear Cross Traffic Alert can help avoid accidents while reversing out of a parking space or a garage. Blind Spot Detectors serve a similar purpose. The steering and lane control assistant can come in handy when the traffic is slow moving. This feature aids the driver by automatically maintaining the desired distance from the other cars, it also lowers the speed to bring the car to a gradual halt as well as provides steering support. These are some of the features that come under the driver assist mode.
Self Driving Mode
Tesla and Google are two industry leaders working on launching self-driving vehicles. Tesla was under heat when its self-driving car crashed and killed the driver. In another instance, the car hit a parked police auto. These incidents show us the limits of this technology and also the areas that need to be worked on in order to make it a 100% fool proof, because driving is a complex task; it goes beyond following some rules, or an algorithm in a controlled environment. It involves learning.
Waymo AI software is Google’s entry into the self-driving auto market. It sports a powerful AI which processes date from the automobile’s lidar, radar, high res cameras, GPS and cloud services in real-time to control the vehicle.
The learning is not limited to the vicinity of the vehicle, it also involves predicting the moves of the elements or object in the vehicle’s course such as predicting that the vehicle in front is blocked and will have to reverse and gain space to get out. Or the pedestrian walking on the edge of the road is likely to jaywalk. These learning are intuitive and the more data the AI collect, the more equipped towards faultless driving it gets. The learning collected by one vehicle makes its way back to the central system and is integrated into all the systems.
Tesla, despite the hiccups, has made major strides in this space as well. Tesla’s AI comes equipped with a gamut of ultrasonic sensors, sonars, forward facing radars and GPS settings, and similar to that of Google’s Waymo, the AI converts the data into control functions for the vehicle.
Cloud services keep the data flow running which is required by the AI to serve their functions in a connected car. Connect cars go beyond scheduling routine car service and maintenance reminders such as engine checkups, brake pad replacements, oil replacements etc.. AI can detect problems well in advance through the data collected from high-tech sensors.
A prime example is Volkswagen providing predictive maintenance and Over The Air (OTA) software updates for all the models under their make. It’s not the drivers who benefit from the AI, but the advertisers targeting the driver. Due to the sheer volume of data the AI has on the driver and his activities online, it can serve the driver with highly targeted ads based on their behaviour patterns online. Based on the driver’s shopping habits, the driver can be directed towards sales running within the vicinity.
AI Aided Insurance
The application of AI for risk assessment has made it a valuable asset for the insurance industry. Al powered risk assessment is much more accurate, based on the real-time data collected by the software. Not only does it collect historical data, but it’s based on different combinations and can also predict how safe the driver is likely to be in the future.
DIY Auto claims is another area where the AI’s contribution in speeding up the filing process is enormous. Dingsunbao 2.0 is a popular auto damage assessment application. The app has on-screen instructions that help the user record their vehicle damage for the claim. It also notifies the user on the possible repairs based on what is covered by the insurance and what is not.
AI Aided Manufacturing
Use of robots on the assembly line is nothing new, however, the use of AI equipped Hyundai Vest Exoskeleton (H-VEX) and Hyundai Chairless Exoskeleton (H-CEX) is. These are wearable robots that help protect their human wearers from potential injuries by observing the movements of the human wearers and taking the necessary measures to assure the safety of the wearer. AVGs (Automated Guided Vehicles), which are essentially AI-powered Container Handling Forklifts which makes moving around of auto parts without human labour possible. Through sensors,they can detect obstacles in their path and navigate a way to avoid them. Hiring a forklift might be safer and easier than ever in the future!
AI also comes in handy in the welding and painting aspect of the manufacturing process by detecting irregularities and defects in the material and notifying quality control. These are few of the roles that AI currently plays in the auto industry and with the coming years, the use of AI in various verticals in the auto industry will only go up. AI will help reduce human labour, check human errors, in turn, decreasing fatalities. It will also play a crucial role in how automobiles are built, sold and marketed.