New CCC-FiRa Partnership to Focus on Ultra-Wideband Technology Use Cases and Regulations

By Alex Passett November 30, 2023

Let’s talk about two important consortia and news that accompanies them: the Car Connectivity Consortium (CCC) and the FiRa Consortium, or simply FiRa. The importance of each shouldn’t be understated, as addressing the future of vehicle-to-smart device connectivity (and how consumers interact with evolving services) is all vital, especially as technological advancements continue proliferating right in front of us.

The CCC is a cross-industry organization working to advance smartphone-to-car connectivity solutions. Representing a large portion of today’s global automotive and smartphone industries (e.g. through Apple, BMW, Ford, Google, Honda, Hyundai, Mercedes-Benz, Samsung, etc.), the CCC brings automotive and consumer technology sectors together to develop best-possible industry standards for solutions that address vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communication and vehicle-to-smart device functionalities.

The FiRa Consortium (i.e. FiRa denoting the “fine-ranging” and positioning capabilities of ultra-wideband, or UWB, technology) dedicates its focuses to transforming how we interact with our environment by enabling precise location awareness for consumers and their devices. FiRa drives the development of technical certifications and specifications as technologies advance, advocating for effective regulations and defining the best-possible use cases for UWB. (“The Power to Be Precise” is at the core of FiRa’s M.O., and it’s easy to see why – FiRa recognizes how the marketplace is at an inflection point, where established enterprises are building and deploying products and services utilizing UWB. So, since UWB’s success depends on an interoperable, holistic and interconnected ecosystem, FiRa contributes its resources to the smart assurance of that very ecosystem.)

There’s our context. Now, the accompanying news:

Earlier this month, the CCC and FiRa officially announced the formation of the Joint Ultra-Wideband MAC PHY Working Group (JUMPWG) for the joint development and further maintenance of UWB specifications.

“This collaboration between the two consortia is critical for responsibly maturing UWB technology,” said CCC President Alysia Johnson. “As underlying standards evolve, this new working group will ensure the long-term interoperability and scalability of advanced UWB technology, encouraging broader adoption of it for exceptionally secure and accurate ranging for vehicle access.”

“We’re excited to collaborate and advance the development of UWB, as it is the most effective available technology for delivering accurate ranging and positioning in challenging real-world environments,” said FiRa’s Board Chair Clint Chaplin. “This is an essential layer of technology with real-world applications, making it highly convenient for consumers to consistently access their vehicles using their own smart devices.”

(Editor’s note: I’d heard of neither the CCC nor FiRa until recently; still, this has proven to be a fascinating dive into these segments of the tech landscape. Maintaining smart and fair oversight over such technologies as the world continues to adapt to the latest innovations is a good move, particularly concerning vehicle-to-smart device connectivity, covering safety implications and development guardrails.)

For more information, read here.

Edited by Greg Tavarez
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