Today's cars run up to 100 million lines of software code on as many as 70 to 100 electronic control units, ECU's. Software related recalls cost $75 to $100 per vehicle plus time and inconvenience to the driver.
As vehicle codes become more advanced auto manufacturers can expect annual costs in the hundreds of millions for software recalls. The Automotive Software Remote Update Technology (ASRUT) developed by Hughes Telematics Inc.(HTI) provides a significantly lower cost alternative by "re-flashing" the vehicle remotely. Instead of 1:1 vehicle repairs ASRUT is capable of 1:thousands of vehicle updates and with no driver intervention. Instead of visiting a service center to upload software patches vehicles will remotely download and install the upgrades through their telematics systems over cellular-data networks in minutes.
HTI's initial application of this technology is exclusive to the Telematics Control Unit (TCU). HTI will leverage the technology to remotely add new features to the Mercedes-Benz mbrace™ telematics service offering. The full application of this technology to both updating existing code or adding new services will benefit both automotive manufacturers and consumers by making auto software updates cheaper, easier and more reliable.