Apps for Cars - The Road to Autonomy

Apps for Cars

Andy Chatham, Co-Founder, DIMO joined Grayson Brulte on The Road to Autonomy podcast to discuss the DIMO open-connected vehicle platform and why there are no good apps for cars today. 

The conversation begins with Andy discussing why he decided to build DIMO and what he saw in the market when he launched the company.

Cars are becoming more intelligent, they are taking over more of the driving task from end-consumers, but were still waiting for that first deployment where millions of people are able to actually take their hands and eyes off the road and give control over to a computer. 

– Andy Chatman

With the rapid increase in ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance Systems) systems being available in cars today, combined with consumers believing that an SAE Level 2 system is a self-driving car, Grayson brings up the point that consumers will want to own personally owned autonomous vehicles when they are ready. If this does indeed come true, what impact will it have on the robo-taxi market?

I think there will be some real markets in which robo-taxis are able to deliver value to consumers and provide a useful service.

– Andy Chatham

Then there is Tesla, What happens if and when Tesla can figure out SAE Level 3? What impact will it have on the emerging personally owned autonomous vehicle market? What impact this have on Tesla from a business perspective? 

One thing that were very sure of, is that it will increase the value of the data coming from the car in some relatively non-obvious ways. 

– Andy Chatham

This is where DIMO comes into the picture. 

We want to give ownership of the data coming from the vehicle to the owner of the vehicle and the occupant of the vehicle, and make sure that they are able to do whatever that want with it. 

– Andy Chatham

At some point in the future, consumers are going to want to own and control their own data as it relates to their mobility experiences. Today, consumers can take control of their data with DIMO and take advantage of apps that create value for their driving experience. 

One of the apps, that developers have built on the platform is battery health monitoring. With electric vehicles having surpassed 10% of global sales for the first time in 2022 and used electric vehicle sales in the United States rising 32% in the first three months of 2023, knowing the health of the EV’s battery becomes extremely important. 

We can provide you insights into how your battery is performing in the real-world. How quickly are you able to charge it. How quickly it’s discharging. When you are repeatedly charging it from zero to 100%, we can give you insights around, hey this is going to degrade the value of your battery overtime. – Andy Chatman

In addition to battery health data, DIMO is able to offer insights into real-world EV charging performance and what chargers are charging at what speeds. There are inconsistencies in the public charging network that is leading to charging anxiety for non-tesla EV drivers. The difference is that Tesla built, owns and maintains their own EV charging network. 

Tesla drivers really experience range anxiety. 

– Andy Chatham

With all of the data coming off of connected vehicles, one of the key elements that OEMs will have to maintain is trust. Consumers are going to have to trust that their vehicle is going to always work, always be secure and work when they need to drive somewhere. One of DIMO’s goals is to become a trusted platform for mobility. 

We look at what we doing as creating the first truly open developer platform for cars.

– Andy Chatham

Wrapping up the conversation, Andy shares his opinion on the future of mobility.

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Recorded on Tuesday, March 28, 2023