Porsche has teamed up with German start-up company XAIN in order to test blockchain applications for future in-vehicle use.
This technology offers faster and more secure transactions, and can facilitate features such as locking and unlocking the vehicle via an app, temporary access authorizations and if developed further, even improved autonomous driving functions.Last year, Toyota announced their own partnership with MIT’s Media Lab, in an attempt to look into different aspects of blockchain technology – which is the encrypted ledger technology behind popular cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum.Yet Porsche is looking to be the first automaker to implement and successfully test blockchain in a car.“We can use blockchain to transfer data more quickly and securely, giving our customers more peace of mind in the future, whether they are charging, parking or need to give a third party, such as a parcel delivery agent, temporary access to the vehicle. We translate the innovative technology into direct benefits for the customer,” stated Porsche financial strategist, Oliver Doring.As the car becomes part of the blockchain, it will make a direct offline connection possible, without diversion through a server. According to Porsche, it will take 1.6 seconds to open and close a car via app, making it up to six times faster than before.Moreover, this technology makes it possible to allow temporary access to the vehicle, securely. Third-party providers can be integrated without the need for additional hardware simply by using “smart contracts”“With this modern technology, we are also fostering our electromobility offensive: ranging from a faster, easier and safer authentication at the charging station to the payment process,” added Porsche’s VP of electric/electronic systems, Uwe Michael.The German automaker is also working on a new business model based on blockchain technology, using auditable data logging – it basically allows for data to be processed in a locally encrypted manner in a distributed blockchain, thus making deletions transparent. As for how it relates to autonomous driving, we might see local data used to obtain regional learning effects, which in turn can be shared securely among vehicles.After three months of development and tests, blockchain technology was introduced into the Porsche Panamera using an energy-efficient mining process from XAIN.