AT&T ties up with global operators to promote connected cars
28 February 2017 | Alan Burkitt-Gray
AT&T is to collaborate with the Bridge Alliance of mobile operators to promote connected cars in Asia and Africa.
The US operator says it already connects more than 11 million cars, but the new announcement is seen as its latest move to increase its global coverage through other operators.
The Bridge Alliance brings together many of Asia’s most prominent operators, including Singtel, AIS, Optus, SoftBank, Telkomsel, Türk Telekom, Globe Telecom, STC, SK Telecom and Airtel – which also operates in Africa. China Unicom is a partner.
Chris Penrose, president of internet of things (IoT) solutions at AT&T, said: “Teaming with members of Bridge Alliance helps simplify global deployments with local operator networks in these regions. This is huge for our automotive customers.”
Speaking today at Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona, he added: “It gives them an opportunity to access customers in countries which collectively cover nearly 30% of the world’s population.”
This collaboration sets up a framework to extend the geographic coverage AT&T can provide to automotive manufacturers looking expand into the markets served by members of Bridge Alliance. AT&T said it works with 22 car and truck makers around the world.
Eileen Tan, CEO of the Bridge Alliance, said: “Our collaboration with AT&T is based on the alignment and integration of processes, platforms and propositions. This presents exciting possibilities for the automotive industry, helping to accelerate the delivery of cutting-edge connected car solutions in our markets.”
Meanwhile at MWC AT&T also announced that its 2017 capital expenditure will be “in the $22 billion range”, making the total for 2016 and 2017 “more than $40 billion”, implying a $4 billion rise on last year.
“More than 40% of that two-year total will help AT&T expand and enhance its portfolio of smart, agile, mobile and integrated business solutions worldwide,” said the company.