German Automaker Porsche Tests Blockchain For Data Logging

News | February 28, 2018 By:

German automaker Porsche is currently testing blockchain applications directly in vehicles.

The trial is being conducted in collaboration with blockchain startup Xain AG, which won Porsche’s first innovation contest on blockchain technology in June 2017. Xain focuses on the development of machine learning/artificial intelligence products on top of its patented governed blockchain optimization framework.

The German automaker said that the blockchain applications being tested include locking and unlocking the vehicle via an app, temporary access authorizations, and new business models based on encrypted data logging. This could be developed further to improve autonomous driving functions.

Oliver Döring, Financial Strategist at Porsche, said they can use blockchain to transfer data more quickly and securely, giving their customers more peace of mind in the future, whether they are charging, parking or need to give a third party temporary access to the vehicle. “We translate the innovative technology into direct benefits for the customer,” he added.

Porsche said the process of locking and unlocking a vehicle with the blockchain technology is six times as fast as using the current system. The technology also ensures that access authorizations can be enabled remotely and checked by the owner at any time.

“A protected connection to vehicle data and functionalities can be established using blockchain,” the company said. “At the same time, it protects all communication between participants. Third-party providers can be integrated without the need for additional hardware, simply by using “smart contracts”. Smart contracts are automated contracts that trigger transactions upon the occurrence of previously defined conditions. This means that compliance with the contract is ensured through technology.”

Porsche also announced that it is working on a new blockchain business model in which it will use the technology to process data.

“The user is in control of the data, deciding how to use it depending on the situation,” Porsche said. “All activities are documented in the blockchain, making deletions transparent. With this basis, the future of autonomous driving will see improved functions on offer: Local data can be used to obtain regional learning effects, which can be shared securely with other vehicles. The customer can make use of swarm data, which is protected at the same time.”

Interest in blockchain from the automotive industry has really taken off. Car manufacturers, as well as numerous other constituencies across the automotive ecosystem believe the technology offers a range of potential benefits.

Recently, Volkswagen and BMW both announced their plan to utilize blockchain technology in order to transform the automotive industry.