Update from eSync Alliance accelerates software-defined vehicle roadmap

As the development of connectivity within vehicles hits the gas pedal, the eSync Alliance has updated its standard-setting specification for over-the-air (OTA) data exchange, emphasising interoperability and in particular looking to enable greater collaboration among automakers and suppliers and accelerate the development of the Software Defined Vehicle (SDV).

A bi-directional OTA pipeline standard for the automotive industry, eSync enables automakers to deliver remote vehicle updates that can reach every area of the vehicle. Manufacturers can also receive diagnostic data back from a vehicle through the same data pipeline. At eSync’s core is eSync Alliance, a non-profit trade association that encourages collaboration between OEMs and Tier-1 suppliers to define and advance a standardised multi-company approach for automotive OTA.

A non-profit trade association driving a multi-company solution for OTA updates and diagnostics data in the automotive electronics space, eSync Alliance promotes co-operation as a key to delivering digital transformation within the automotive industry.

It believes a standardised OTA data pipeline is a fundamental to achieving this goal and that, by working together under its umbrella, companies can benefit from a simplified development environment made possible by a standardised yet customisable platform potentially saving automakers billions of dollars per year.

The association added that for Tier-1 suppliers, a fully interoperable, standardised approach to OTA enables businesses to confidently supply an OTA-ready product to automakers, with confidence that their products can be “quickly and easily” integrated into the platform architecture. A suggested key benefit for automakers is that by sourcing interoperable OTA devices, much of the OTA infrastructure is already in place. This not only saves time and reduces development costs, but it can also allow for greater scalability across models. 

The new Version 2.2 eSync specification is said to draw on the accumulated experiences of Alliance members in implementing numerous OTA programmes to clarify and tighten the specification, minimising the potential for divergent interpretations and implementations.

Based on a three-level server-client-agent architecture, the new specification aims to ensure that devices with agents from numerous sources can quickly be integrated into the common OTA data pipeline. This aid the alliance would be crucial to accelerating the development of the SDV, which relies on reliable connectivity and upgradability of software in every electronic device in the car. 

At the same time, the eSync Alliance’s Compliance Working Group launched an Agent Validation Tool, designed to provide users with a capability to test their implementations. The web-based interface allows for verification of the critical OTA processes of an eSync agent and is said to gives automaker confidence that a Tier-1 supplier’s eSync Agent is both compliant and interoperable with other suppliers’ devices.

“With Version 2.2 of our specification, we’re standardising the standard. Users of eSync technology can rest assured that, by implementing the latest edition of the specification and making use of the Agent Validation Tool, they’re able to create interoperable solutions that will shape the SDVs of the future,” said eSync Alliance executive director Mike Gardner.

“Version 2.2 is about practical improvements that make eSync technology a consistent solution for OEMs and Tier-1s and is the step change that will facilitate significant growth in the years to come.”

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