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Device to help Nano make distress call

By Motortrend India Staff   |   21 February,2010

Tata Motors’ Nano may soon be IT-enabled to send out an automatic distress call in an emergency.

A device with an embedded mobile SIM card inside the car would send out data, voice message or a written text, regarding the location, speed, impact and number of people to a helpline, based on the machine-to-machine (M2M) communication technology.

“The information is sent automatically in case the car meets with an accident, so that help can reach the passengers in time without depending on any human interface,” Per Lindberg, global business development executive at Telenor Connexion, said at the Mobile World Congress held at Barcelona.

Executives of the networking solutions provider are in the country to discuss the installation of such devices in Tata Motors’ Nano, Jaguar and Land Rover vehicles.

Analysts said the Tatas could be open to a positive discussion with Telenor Connexion because emergency call service in cars would become mandatory in Europe after 2014. The Tatas are likely to take the Nano to Europe in the next two years.

Telenor Connexion is a wholly owned subsidiary of Telenor Group, the sixth-largest mobile operator in the world, and provides intelligently managed M2M networking solutions. M2M communications travel between cell phones and other electronic devices such as personal digital assistants, printers and hands-free vehicle systems.

Some services that utilise the technology include tracking the location of containers, fleet monitoring, signals forwarded automatically to alarm centres during burglary and other emergencies.

“We would also hold discussions with other original equipment providers and vehicle manufacturers, including electric auto makers, during our visit to India,” Lindberg said.

Analysts said Reva Electric Car Company, which manufactures cars at its Bangalore plant and exports them to Europe, the US and the Asia Pacific, could be another target for Telenor. Telenor’s largest customers in the M2M market include Securitas, Daimler and Volvo.

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