Thoughtworks and AWS launch SDV Pulse to help industry navigate global megatrend

Global technology consultancy and Amazon Web Services launch inaugural annual report which aims to help automakers optimise the potential of software defined vehicles speedily.  

Autocar Pro News Desk By Autocar Pro News Desk calendar 10 Jul 2024 Views icon1261 Views Share - Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to LinkedIn Share to Whatsapp
Thoughtworks and AWS launch SDV Pulse to help industry navigate global megatrend

Global technology consultancy Thoughtworks, which integrates strategy, design and engineering, has announced the launch of Software-Defined Vehicle (SDV) Pulse, an inaugural annual report informed by Thoughtworks’ and AWS’ observations, conversations and front-line experiences helping their global clients in the automotive industry transition to SDV. 

With software deeply embedded in modern vehicles enabling capabilities in everything from passenger infotainment to autonomous driving, the report compiles the most relevant technologies, practice and other key trends for auto manufacturers and suppliers to consider for their SDV strategy.

The SDV Pulse report has forty insights, each represented as a ‘pulse point’, that reflects a technology, practice or trend. Thoughtworks and AWS experts have also identified an adoption stage for where each pulse point currently stands. Broadly, these stages are ‘concept phase’ for pulse points that are emerging yet their potential remains largely unproven; ‘early adoptions’ for pulse points that represent a significant differentiation opportunity for potential early adopters; and ‘mass adoption’ for pulse points that are becoming widespread across the industry so the window to translate them into differentiated value is closing. 

“The relationship between the automotive industry and software engineering is, to say the least, complex. One thing everyone agrees on is that this relationship is inescapable. To remain competitive and future-proof, everyone needs to understand the challenges, but also the immense opportunities,” said Michael Fait, global head technology for SDV, Thoughtworks.

  Highlighted themes in the inaugural SDV Pulse include:

In-vehicle zero-trust architecture (ZTA) (concept phase): ZTA, with its fundamental principle of assuming no inherent trust, offers a robust defence mechanism against cybersecurity risks.

Continuous compliance (concept phase): Organizations can automate compliance checks and audits and integrate tools into software development pipelines, allowing teams to detect and address compliance issues early in the development process.

Developer portals for vehicle APIs (early adoption phase): Multiple OEMs now offer portals to help developers build applications using vehicle APIs. We see these developer portals as a key enabler of SDV ecosystem growth. 

Rust (early adoption phase): Rust is a modern alternative to C++ for embedded automotive development that will improve safety and productivity. The source code and qualification documents are open-sourced which is a fundamental step towards using Rust in functional safety-relevant cases.

Automotive grade Linux (AGL) (mass adoption phase): Initially started as a platform for building infotainment systems, AGL is the only project organization that addresses all software in a vehicle. It has now reached a level of maturity where several major automotive manufacturers are adopting it for their production vehicles.

Hardware accelerators in the cloud (mass adoption phase): Automotive companies send and store petabytes of sensor data in the cloud — a process that can be both time-consuming and expensive. Accessing hardware accelerators in the cloud helps enable OEMs to mitigate the challenge of hardware accelerators that are growing scarce and expensive. 

“AWS works backwards with customers to address business challenges, and leveraging our collective expertise, AWS and Thoughtworks are helping the industry transition to a software-defined future,” said Stefano Marzani, Worldwide Technology Lead, SDV at AWS.  “Through increased development in the cloud, companies across the automotive landscape can take advantage of technologies like AI, ML and now generative AI to turn data into insights that will inform the functions and features of tomorrow.” 

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