Akamai announces OTA updates designed to meet needs of connected cars


Akamai Technologies unveiled on Thursday support towards customers’ incorporation of Internet of Things (IoT) devices into their IT infrastructures.

Through this initiative, Akamai will leverage the scale, performance and security of the Akamai Intelligent Platform to support fast, secure, and resilient distribution of data to connected devices anywhere across the globe, as well as to power advanced distributed communications and processing of data originating in these connected devices.

IoT is viewed by many as the next key stage of Internet evolution. Industries of all types, from automotive to manufacturing to consumer technology, are making IoT devices critical components of their business strategies and IT infrastructure. At the same time, putting in place the robust infrastructure necessary to support this innovative technology is posing challenges to equipment manufacturers and users alike.

Akamai’s offering through its IoT initiative is an “Over the Air (OTA)” solution has been designed to meet the demands of automobile manufacturers’ and automotive Original Equipment Manufacturers’ (OEMs) connected vehicle initiatives. It offers the ability to deliver firmware, navigation and infotainment updates to connected vehicles over Wi-Fi or cellular, eliminating the need for costly physical visits to automotive service centers.

It incorporates several automotive specific capabilities including edge IP-binding to enable updates from a configurable set of IP addresses in order to adhere to the data-locality rules of various jurisdictions and the zero-rating agreements that auto manufacturers might have with their chosen telecommunications providers. It also secures delivery of updates using a flexible SSL/TLS program that also supports customers using their own client certificates, and offers advanced dashboards to track the delivery of updates by individual vehicle, thus allowing auto manufacturers to review campaign progress and confirm downloads.

Akamai’s IoT initiative is intended to meet these challenges head on through solutions built on the proven scale and security of the Akamai Intelligent Platform. Using Akamai IoT solutions, customers can avoid the capital expenditure and ongoing operational cost required to build out a global network capable of securely supporting millions of devices. Further, remote software downloads and data capture reduce the costs associated with “truck rolls” and/or service center visits.

One organization already benefitting from Akamai’s IoT solutions, specifically OTA Updates, is Harman, the market leader in providing connected car solutions to the world’s automakers. According to Oren Betzaleli, vice president and general manager, Harman Connected Services, “Today’s automobile can easily be thought of as a moving computer, with software controlling telematics, safety and security and even embedded entertainment. And all of those computer systems require regular updates to make sure they’re operating as they should. Working with Akamai gives us the confidence that we’re delivering the best-connected car experience to our customers, and ultimately our customers’ drivers.”  

“For nearly 20 years, we’ve helped our customers improve access to, and performance of, millions upon millions of websites,” explained Ash Kulkarni, senior vice president and general manager, Web Performance and Security, Akamai. “Akamai pioneered cloud-based security for web sites, applications and the transmission of data via the Web. Now, we’re taking that experience and expertise and giving our customers the power to securely exchange data with any connected device, anywhere across the globe.”

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IoT Innovator

IoT Innovator