Getting Results Magazine Getting Results Magazine Fall 2018 - Page 5

AUTONOMOUS REVOLUTION The Autonomous Revolution: The Impact of Self-Driving Cars on Our Society W e are in a significant technology transition right now, fueled by the convergence of sensors connected to the Internet of Things with high- speed connectivity everywhere, enabled by ever-faster computing power and sophisticated applications. Other enabling technologies are the revolutions in materials sciences, battery storage, and solar power. As a result, we are starting to see electric- powered self-driving cars owned by fleet operators (called “autonomous fleets”) as opposed to the individually owned and operated gas-powered vehicles that we drive today. Electric cars will be as cheap as regular cars by 2025. Because electric vehicles have many fewer moving parts, the reliability and lifespan of these cars will also improve dramatically (from 200K-300K miles to 500K-1M miles). The design will be more like an airplane - the Boeing 737 has a 30-year duty cycle. Owners of By: Jim Jubelirer these fleets will want to lower their costs, so the auto manufacturers have an incentive to produce more durable cars. Of course, this will decimate the conventional market for consumer cars. Will the traditional brands lead into the future? They are certainly interested in doing so. Change is coming, and they need to adapt or get left behind. Mark Fields, CEO of Ford Motor, stated: “The next decade will be defined by autonomous cars. It will be as big a transition as our original manufacturing line for the Model T. When you look at the benefits of autonomous vehicles, we want to lead the way.” The self-driving component of the autonomous revolution is also progressing rapidly. Existing car manufacturers, new car aspirants, current software giants (think Apple and Google), and startups around the world are working hard on this. Partial self-driving car capabilities exist today - my Tesla Model 3 comes with Fully Self-Driving (FSD) Mode. A recent hardware upgrade, which will be installed on my car for free, improves the accuracy of the road-sensing camera by 10X. WHEN WILL AUTONOMOUS VEHICLES BE THE NORM? Experts consistently under-estimate technology adoptions rates and over-estimate the accuracy of their estimates. The most aggressive estimate is that in about 10 years, a majority of cars will be self-driving. A middle-of-the-road estimate is 20 years. Oil executives are suggesting demand for gasoline-powered cars will remain strong for 50 years. The losers in this transition (e.g., car dealers, parking lot owners, insurance companies, and trial lawyers-all very powerful interest groups!) will do what they can to slow progress through effective campaigns designed to spread fear, uncertainty, and doubt. I will be fascinated for the rest of my life to watch this transition unfold. CONTINUED ON PAGE 8 FALL 2018 | 5