One of the game changing technologies that has grown substantially over the past few years is cloud technology. Whether you’re managing your company finances, writing up documents on an online-only service, or playing video games on modern-day consoles and/or PC, all of these either offer access to cloud technology or the technology itself is an intrinsic, fundamental part of the product. But as the popularity of cloud technology grows, it’s hard not to consider how it will be implemented in the future, including in the transport industry.
What is cloud technology?
If you’re not familiar with cloud technology, it primarily refers to a technology where the internet plays a substantial role. Essentially, cloud technology saves files and information online, allowing you to access them whenever you want from anywhere in the world. A basic example is Google Drive. Drive is Google’s online-based answer to Microsoft Office. Because Drive is an online product, whenever you make a change to a document, those changes are immediately saved to Google’s online servers. And because your Drive account is tied to your overall Google account, you can access your documents from any computer or device where you can log into your Google account. This makes Google Drive ‘device agnostic’, whereas old versions of Microsoft Office were restricted to a set device and moving your content to another device was a far more tedious practice. Now, of course, Microsoft Office has its own cloud-based features as well. This is just one example of many regarding the primary purpose of cloud technology. If anything, it’s about removing the risks and pitfalls that used to exist when saving work in the past. Of course, bringing the internet into the mix does mean that hacking becomes a risk instead. Luckily, though, most cloud-based services ensure that the online servers that store your data are protected with very secure forms of encryption.
How cloud technology could be integrated into transport
The thing with cloud technology is that it has an almost limitless level of potential. It’s not merely just about storing data on online servers. Cloud technology can also help offset the processing strain placed on computers and other tech by handling some of that strain itself. That means that devices using years-old hardware could still run efficiently with help from the cloud. When you come to realise that cloud technology could offer so much more than it does right now, then it can be applied to various technologies in an almost infinite combination of ways – this includes transport. Of course, there’s no way to predict just how cloud technology will integrate with transport, but it could influence several areas of the transport world, from how cars are manufactured to how logistics operations are undertaken. Some of the potential advancements (and improvements over current functions) cloud technology could bring to transport include:
- An increase in natively integrated GPS with free, self-updating functionality
- Improved tracking of vehicles, which is ideal for freight vehicles and the logistics industry at large
- More efficient incident/accident reporting that could ultimately become automated
- Improved live updates of traffic conditions, as well as any potential hazardous weather conditions
- Regular firmware updates to operating systems that could be implemented in future ‘smart cars’
- Up-to-date location information such as attractions, events occurring around the time drivers arrive, roadworks, any recent incidents and/or crimes that would be valuable in knowing about, etc.
- Effective integration with third-party car operating systems (Apple’s forthcoming car OS, and Google’s recently announced Android Auto)
Cloud technology has the potential to change the face of transport in a wide variety of ways, both on a professional and personal level. As noted, the possibilities are almost endless, and there’s no doubt that cloud technology will eventually change the way we get from point A to point B.