Data and Innovation in the Private Sector
The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas has increasingly become a platform for automotive innovations to be displayed. The new tech ranges from the obligatory futuristic flying car concepts to developments that are actually being implemented today. At CES 2020 Jaguar Land Rover claimed a ‘World First’ in the latter category, announcing the New Land Rover Defender would host the first ever automotive dual embedded-SIM (eSIM) vehicle connectivity architecture. This would provide customers with the digital capacity to keep them connected, updated and entertained at all times – anywhere in the world. The announcement was a great reason to celebrate for both the hardware and connectivity teams involved – the latter of which is the focus for this award nomination.
The project was incepted in 2017 when Jaguar Land Rover began the development of a new vehicle connectivity architecture using eSIMs. An eSIM is a programmable chip, which enables devices to connect to wireless communication networks – just like a traditional SIM card, but as it is remotely programable it is permanently soldered into the device. Use of an eSIM would enable an enhanced connectivity customer experience and new “Internet of Things” use cases through improved control of the vehicle’s connections, as the network operator no-longer owns the SIM.
The project started in 2018 when Jaguar Land Rover hired BearingPoint to help source, specify, validate and launch a whole new connectivity solution including global network access, lifecycle management, billing, subscriptions and more. This started with the procurement of Tata Communications as Jaguar Land Rover’s new global end-to-end connectivity supplier and the joint team delivery started in 2019. The BearingPoint transformation team was embedded alongside Jaguar Land Rover connectivity engineers, working on the non-technical delivery aspects such as programme management, regulatory compliance, process redesign and operational readiness, dovetailing with colleagues from Tata Communications to deliver the network access globally to over 130 markets using their MOVE™ platform.
The project delivered at pace and scale – initially launching the enhanced connectivity in 70 markets in early 2020. In 2021 it is now live in over 130 markets and at the time of writing we have over 160,000 vehicles connecting across the world, growing every day with Jaguar Land Rover’s global vehicle production.
For Jaguar Land Rover the switch to eSIM has enabled significant customer experience improvements, providing ‘always on’ connectivity which better meets the high standards of a luxury automotive customer. The tech also enables more active management of connectivity at the vehicle, market or global level, which will allow the business to better handle the boom in data usage by drivers and their vehicles over the coming years. On top of this the business was able to grow connectivity sales whilst saving on hardware and data costs. Most importantly however the project demonstrated Jaguar Land Rover’s continued commitment to customer-centric engineering innovation and has delivered something the joint team from Jaguar Land Rover, BearingPoint and Tata Communications is hugely proud of, deserving of the recognition at CES.
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