(Reuters) – Jaguar Land Rover, Britain’s biggest car manufacturer, said on Monday it is testing of software that will allow drivers of the cars to earn the IOTA cryptocurrency as a reward for data sharing.
The logo of the British manufacturer Jaguar is seen on a Jaguar F-Pace SUV car in Zurich, Switzerland, August 10, 2017. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann
The company is developing what it calls “smart wallet” technology to be installed in the cars. This would be the reward of the Jaguar cars with IOTA coins for actions such as enabling their vehicles to automatically report relevant data, such as traffic jams or potholes to the navigation providers and local authorities.
Drivers can also earn rewards as the car participates in a ride-sharing program, Jaguar said. The tokens earned can be used to pay for the toll, parking and charging of electric cars.
The overall goal was to “achieve zero emissions, zero accidents, zero congestion,” the company said.
The global auto companies are exploring blockchain applications, figuring out the different ways in which they can make use of the technology to suit their different needs. Blockchain, the system on cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin is a shared database that is maintained by a network of computers that are connected to the internet.
The British car company is testing the technology in the new Jaguar Land Rover software engineering base in Shannon, Ireland, where the engineers have already equipped several vehicles, including the Jaguar F-PACE and the Range Rover Velar, with “smart wallet”, the company said.
It still has no timetable for when it will be commercially available, said Jaguar, a subsidiary of Tata Motors.
The IOTA-token is based on a distributed ledger technology that makes it possible for people and machines to transfer money and data without transaction costs. JOT transactions on digital asset exchanges, and was the last of 27 US cents per token.
“The smart wallet technology … can easily be adapted in all new vehicles,” Dominik Schiener, IOTA co-founder and co-chairman of the board of directors, told Reuters Friday.
“JOT want interoperability with all of these different players. So there is no Jaguar currency, no BMW currency, but a universal sign for this machine economy,” he added.
Reporting by Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss in New York, Editing by Rosalba O’brien