Connected-car service provider Airbiquity released its 2016 industry predictions on Wednesday.

Scott Frank, the company’s vice president of marketing, says we can expect the rapid pace of technology development related to connected vehicles to continue.

"Automotive continues to face significant challenges—and opportunities—for connected car technologies and programs. The industry has only begun to scratch the surface of what is yet to come," Frank said. "A decade ago, no one could have predicted the rate of technology evolution or level of competition the industry is experiencing today. One thing we know for sure is the pace isn't going to let up; in fact it's going to accelerate."

Here are a few of Airbiquity’s predictions for 2016, provided by the company:

  • Increased recognition of automotive leadership threats by non-traditional technology playersWell-known and highly capitalized Silicon Valley technology companies like Google, Apple, Tesla, Uber and Lyft are declaring their ambitions to be automotive industry disruptors and leaders – and consumers are receptive to the idea based on the dominance of their brands, products, and track records of vision and innovation. To counter this threat, traditional automakers will fast-track internal transformations to adopt new technologies, embrace new ecosystem partners, and change outdated processes and procurement policies that are hindering progress. The good news is automakers are increasingly aware of the stakes and taking action. The bad news is a daunting task lies ahead that will test automaker management teams top-to-bottom, as well as the rank and file that must get on board to make it happen.
  • Tighter integration of connected vehicle programs with product and customer life cycles: In addition to providing consumers with in-vehicle infotainment content, connected cars are unique in the ability to receive remote software updates to fix recalls and enhance features, as well as provide data about vehicle operations and driving history. This ability presents tremendous cost savings and consumer engagement opportunities for automakers such as reducing recall expense, enabling real-time part and system evaluation, optimizing back-office operations and supply chain, and introducing new driving centric services and monetization. But seizing these opportunities will require automakers to better integrate the strategy and operations of connected vehicle service functions with long standing areas like design and engineering, customer experience and support, brand and marketing, and dealer channels. In 2015, Airbiquity saw an increased maturity of automaker connected vehicle service organizations, and we expect this trend to continue through 2016 given the significant brand stakes and increasingly attractive return-on-investment.
  • Increased focus on developing and deploying electrification and autonomous technologies: Automakers will increase investments for the development of technologies to improve electric vehicle performance and expand autonomous driving features. Regarding electrification, oil prices and consumer demand for electric vehicles may be low today, but increasing global warming concerns and efficiency mandates will press automakers to improve fleet efficiencies. Gas prices will eventually increase followed by consumer demand for more efficient vehicles across all price ranges. In response, automakers must ensure they have the right product at the right time to remain competitive. As far as autonomous goes, the future is clear: It's going to happen. If automakers want a slice of the autonomous pie they have to develop and equip vehicles with enabling technologies. The road to fully autonomous vehicles will be a long one (Airbiquity predicts 2030-35) and there will be bumps along the way. To succeed automakers need to put their stakes in the ground now.

Airbiquity is perhaps best known for Choreo, its cloud-based service delivery platform. The company says it has over 7 million vehicles subscribed to Choreo, which facilitates hundreds of millions of connected car transactions per month in the more than 60 countries and 30 languages that the solution is offered.

For more information about Airbiquity, visit its site here.