"The Future of Data Empowered Mobility" - this was the motto under which representatives of startups and corporations from the tech and automotive industries recently met in Bonn. The event was part of the partnership between T-Systems and the innovation platform STARTUP AUTOBAHN.
"Our company is dedicated to the well-known problem of finding a parking space", Michael Jaschke, head of Alter Mobili, opened the evening. A total of 13 tech start-ups from Germany, England, Italy, the USA and Israel met at the Telekom headquarters last week. They presented their visions for the future of mobility to the visitors within three-minute short presentations. The search for a parking space costs time and pollutes the cities, said Jaschke. The company's solution: A chip in the car recognizes vacant parking spaces and sends this information to drivers who are looking for a parking space themselves. This would have the potential to reduce parking-search traffic by about 30 percent, he explained. Assaf Aloni from the Israeli company Continual dedicated himself to another field. Continual analyzes the mobile data usage of drivers and documents the quality of data throughput. By this, the start-up wants to help network operators identify possible areas for further network expansion.
In line with the motto of the evening, many pitches focused on the collection and use of data in road traffic. The American startup Savari, for instance, has developed a technology that allows cars to reliably exchange data with other road users, traffic lights or mobile phones. The London-based company Synaptiv provides car manufacturers with important information for the introduction of new products by the aid of a specially developed data platform. For this purpose, the company collects data from sensors that are already installed in networked vehicles.
"At T-Systems, we have to bring tradition and innovation together.”
The program also included a keynote speech by Francois Fleutiaux, Commercial Director at T-Systems, and his colleague Maximilian Ahrens, the company's chief technology officer. "We work in a company in which we have to bring together tradition and innovation", explained Fleutiaux. "If we don't manage to do that, we will fail." For this reason, the partnership with STARTUP AUTOBAHN is elementary. "Within the company, it often takes time to create innovations. That's why we have to be in contact with fast moving start-ups." Fleutiaux also emphasized the outstanding position of the automotive industry for T-Systems. T-Systems has been active in this industry for twenty years and invests a large part of its annual budget in automotive-related projects. Ahrens added that the importance of this was also reflected in the actions of other companies. VW, for example, is currently building a completely new business division around the topic of autonomous driving, he said.
"Digitalization makes no sense without cyber security"
In addition to Fleutiaux and Ahrens, head of Telekom Security Dirk Backofen also took part in the event. He started his presentation by saying: "The last topic tonight is one that is important to all of you. Digitalization doesn't make sense without cyber security.” He illustrated this with the increasing number of hacker attacks in recent years: In this year’s May alone, Deutsche Telekom registered around 60 million attacks per day. However, the danger is no longer limited to computers - new targets are networked vehicles and their infrastructure, he stated. "That's why we'll have to treat every car like an own data sensor in the future. If every vehicle is networked, every vehicle needs security." In this context, he also presented the Telekom initiative for the so-called Automotive Security Operation Center. This is a system that oversees networked vehicles and associated IT systems around the clock, analyzes cyber attacks, and keeps the defense system up to date with the latest security technology.
The event was part of a partnership between T-Systems and the STARTUP AUTOBAHN network. STARTUP AUTOBAHN promotes the cooperation between corporations and young companies from the tech scene all over the world. T-Systems has been part of the platform since the beginning of this year.