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Vodafone and Nokia Partnering on Mobility Platform

WEST MIDLANDS, U.K. — A new cloud-based mobility platform to improve the safety of road users is being tested for the first time in the U.K.

Using the power of mobile and data technologies, the platform is a new type of "information superhighway," which will ultimately connect vehicles, cyclists, pedestrians and infrastructure in a digital transport ecosystem.

Developed by Vodafone, Nokia and Chordant, the platform is providing digitally connected road users in the West Midlands with live, highly localized and targeted updates from road operators on lane closures, speed restrictions and traffic incidents, according to Vodafone last month.

The companies received support on the platform from the U.K. Government Centre for Connected and Automated Vehicles (CCAV) and the Midlands Future Mobility (MFM) consortium.

Road authorities are also trialling the platform to control and ease traffic jams and make informed planning decisions, using secure, anonymized and aggregated vehicle position data sent up to 10 times every second from users who have opted into the service.

The capability could be extended for emergency services when responding to an incident, such as someone driving the wrong way on a motorway or for recovery organizations to assist vulnerable road users.

Mobility cloud platform by Vodafone Nokia Chordant. Courtesy Vodafone.

A look at the interface of the mobility cloud platform by partners Vodafone, Nokia and Chordant. Courtesy Vodafone.

The platform is an example of how CAM Testbed U.K., a provider of test facilities for connected and automated mobility (CAM), is enabling innovation and the development of new technologies critical to the safe, mass adoption of connected and self-driving vehicles.

With the open platform at its center, Vodafone is creating an ecosystem of connected vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians across Europe and Africa, with each one acting as the "eyes and ears" of the road.

The information can be used by travelers to warn each other of congested traffic, incidents and other hazards they might be heading toward.

More than 70% of all cars built in 2020 already have digital telematics capabilities, and Vodafone is working with private and public sector organizations to extend the advantages of integrating in-vehicle connected systems within the wider connected transport ecosystem.

“It’s fantastic to see vehicle-to-everything mobile technology being deployed on the open road for the first time in the U.K.," said Luke Ibbetson, head of group R&D at Vodafone.

"While the system is delivered via smartphone, drivers will need to use hands-free equipment. Meanwhile, we are working with the automotive industry and road operators to have the technology integrated within vehicles and transport infrastructure to make our roads safer.

“Safety is of paramount importance to the development of systems that connect road users across mobile platforms."

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mobility, Nokia, Vodafone