The automotive industry has an interest in rolling out the new generation of vehicles as fast as it can, which has led to an industry-wide acceptance of the GSMA embedded SIM specification.
With the intent to accelerate the growth of the connected car market, the interoperable specification has been backed by companies including General Motors, Jaguar Land Rover, Renault Nissan, Scania and Volvo.
The GSMA‘s Embedded SIM Specification provides a single, de-facto standard mechanism for the remote provisioning and management of M2M connections. This allows "over the air" provisioning of an initial operator subscription, and the subsequent change of subscription from one operator to another.
Auto makers will be able to able to launch smart car ranges with new in-vehicle services such as infotainment, real-time navigation, insurance and breakdown services, as well as telematics and remote diagnostics.
The specification will also allow cars to connect to local operators, independently of where the car has been manufactured.
Worldwide, 22 mobile operators have commercially launched solutions based on the GSMA Embedded SIM Specification, including Deutsche Telekom, NTT DOCOMO, Orange, Tele2, Telefónica Group, TeliaSonera and Vodafone.
New operators to launch commercial solutions include AIS, América Móvil, KPN, MTN, Rogers Wireless, Swisscom, Taiwan Mobile, Telenor, TIM as well as members of the Bridge Alliance and the Global M2M Association.
According to Gartner, one in five vehicles will have some form of wireless network connection by 2020, equating to more than 250 million connected vehicles in service.
Additionally, Machina Research estimates that the total number of connections in the connected car market will grow at a CAGR of 31% from 182 million in 2015 to 693 million in 2020.
Alex Sinclair, CTO at GSMA, said: "The GSMA Embedded SIM Specification has progressed from the first availability of commercial solutions to industry adoption in a very short space of time. The automotive sector is set for huge growth and it is clear that a common, global standard will help mobile operators to provide scalable, reliable and secure connectivity to vehicles regardless of location.
"This approach will help car manufacturers offer any type of in-car connected service through a single SIM, which can be provisioned with the profile of a mobile operator once the car is shipped, as well as at the end of a contract, without the SIM needing to be changed."