Vancouver’s Mojio today announced the signing of two major agreements, with AT&T in the U.S. and Telus in Canada, to connect cars manufactured after 1996 over those companies’ wireless networks.
Almost all cars manufactured after 1996 have an on-board diagnostic port (OBD II). The beauty of Mojio’s device is that they’re brand agnostic, and can simply plug in to any car’s OBD port and play nice with existing hardware and networks. The Mojio is open platform, and so can be modified by third-party developers to extend the device’s functionality ad infinitum.
“The possibilities are endless,” says Jay Giraud, CEO of Mojio. “With 20,000 codes and hundreds of sensors, cars are basically our biggest mobile device. Mojio’s open platform offers valuable functionality for just about every driver with a device that anyone can install in seconds and an app on your phone.”
After installing the device, a driver can use a smartphone to locate, monitor and diagnose problems with their car in real time. The device can also offer directions, advice on traffic congestion, and directions to the nearest parking lot or gas station.
While Statistics Canada estimates that there will be 24 million cars on the road in 2018, Telus estimates that only 1.3 million of those will have diagnostics systems built in, creating huge market potential for Mojio. All those unconnected cars with OBD ports with one device to connect them.
Machina Research estimates that the market for connected cars will be worth approximately $422 billion in 2022, up from $22 billion today.
“TELUS is committed to offering innovative new products and we are excited to be the first Canadian carrier to extend our reach beyond the smartphone into automobiles,” said Jim Senko, senior vice-president of Small Business and Emerging Markets at TELUS. “With Mojio and TELUS, Canadians can add their car to the growing list of connected devices that are working together to make their lives easier.”
Third-party developers are currently working on apps for the Mojio device to facilitate paying for parking, business trip expense automation, car rental, and the kind of home automation processes that have already been christened the Internet of Things.
Interested developers can access Mojio’s software development kit here: https://developer.moj.io/
“Having AT&T as our US based carrier is a huge milestone for us,” said Giraud, “Not only does it have an extremely powerful network, our interests are aligned in leading the connected car space.”
Automobiles represent a perfect locus of concentration for the development of the Internet of Things, since cars are the space people spend most time in when they aren’t at home. The promise that connectivity has for protecting cars from accident and breakdown through sensors that monitor almost every activity taking place inside and around the car may also have a range of applications in every other aspect of our lives.
Some of those applications may also have more banal uses, like self-reporting for the insurance industry or building in advertising opportunities for deals on road-side coffee or hotels.
“The connected car is an exciting example of the emergence of the ‘Internet of Things,’ and an area where we will see tremendous growth over the next two to three years,” said Tony Olvet, Group Vice-President of Research, IDC Canada. “We’ll expect to see a plethora of new products and services emerge around safety, navigation and content, as well as innovations in pay-as-you-drive insurance, intelligent fueling, route optimization, parking services, location-based offers and entertainment.”
Mojio will begin selling its device for $169 in Q4 2014, which includes the first year of service, after which the cost will be $6.99 per month. Pre-orders can be placed here: http://www.moj.io