The Bentley Superfast WiFI network adds a whole new dimension to in-car entertainment. The luxury car manufacturer has revealed its plans for what it says will be the world’s first “reliable and secure” in-car WiFi system. And it will be available in all models produced in 2019.
The system is called Advanced Connectivity, and the network will use three SIM cards inside the bespoke router in the boots of the car, which will link to a fixed broadband hub to provide connectivity while on the move. This will allow multiple passengers stream movies, make video calls and access other online services from the comfort of a luxury Bentley.
Hamid Qureshi, Bentley’s connected car product manager, (now there is a job title!) said: “We’re really excited in terms of the uses cases – this idea that when you’re in the back of a Bentley car you can actually use this advanced connectivity to simultaneously view multiple types of heavy content.”
He went on to describe a potential use scenario: “So you could be sitting in the back of the car and a fellow passenger could be streaming Netflix on their iPad and another passenger could be doing a live Skype call and another passenger could be receiving a heavy data file from the office and editing that file and sending it back – and it’s all happening simultaneously because of this advanced router connectivity.”
Security is very important to MR Qureshi as well; he called it a “non-negotiable topic.” He stated that this was a critical element of the network design due to recent scrutiny over the safety of connected cars following a number of high-profile hacking demonstrations. He said: “Our ambition is to always ensure, through rigorous quality and testing, that products are secure and that goes not just for physical products such as producing a car but also digital services.”
The Bentley superfast WiFi network uses an inbuilt Virtual Private Network (VPN) and has been built in collaboration with Viasat, which is known for its management of millions of WiFi hotspots and for bringing satellite-enabled WiFi to commercial and government aircraft.
Let’s hope it doesn’t stop drivers from keeping their eyes on the road, or passengers from enjoying the scenery.
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