Will spar over RF standards endanger V2X roll-out?: Page 2 of 3

October 03, 2017 //By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Will spar over RF standards endanger V2X roll-out?
Which technology is best suited for Vehicle-to-X communications? This question continues to occupy the industry. The ITS-G5 technology, which is based on the modified IEEE 802.11p WiFi standard, is opposed to the C-V2X, which is based on the 3GPP standards. Although BMW, one of the “inventors” of the V2X technology, has already moved to the C-V2X camp and industry heavyweight Qualcomm recently launched a reference design that can be regarded as a clear commitment to C-V2X, the dispute has not yet been resolved. There are still good reasons for ITS-G5, as shows our interview with Onn Haran, co-founder and CTO of chip company Autotalks. The company is regarded as one of the pioneers of V2X technology.

eeNews Europe: What makes you believe that C-V2X would not be interoperable with ITS-G5?

Haran: C-V2X and ITS-G5 are two different protocols with different access layers. A message sent by a vehicle with ITS-G5 unit will not be understood by a vehicle having C-V2X unit, and vice-versa. This is an unacceptable situation. The entire promise of connected vehicle is based on all vehicles speaking the same language. It’s not like the competition of Beta vs. VHS cassettes, which influenced only the user. This question influences the safety of the vehicle.

This fact is clear to the European commission. DG Connect (The European Commission’s Directorate General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology) held a roundtable discussion at September 5th, with the ambitious, yet impossible, wish to have one agreed solution between C-V2X and ITS-G5. DG connect proposed draft included ITS-G5 backward compatibility, for the sake of connecting all vehicles, but C-V2X camp rejected that.

eeNews Europe: C-V2X connects the vehicles to the mobile network, enabling backend data processing and cloud-based functions. This looks to me like a clear advantage over ITS-G5, correct?

Haran: The name C-V2X is an excellent marketing term because it is associated with cellular. But C-V2X isn’t cellular. The name is misleading. C-V2X is a direct link between vehicles that doesn’t involve base stations.

A hybrid communication model, combining ITS-G5 and cellular, is using cellular for long-range services and ITS-G5 for low-latency safety-critical messages. Both ITS-G5 and C-V2X can use the cellular services. There’s simply no difference in that aspect.

In fact, the European Commission 5G action plan specifies that it should co-exist with ITS-G5.


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