Infineon's eSIMs win Daimler over eCall

March 22, 2018 // By Julien Happich
It is estimated that the automatic emergency call, eCall, now mandatory for all new car and light commercial vehicle models in the European Union from 31 March 2018, will shorten the time between an accident and the arrival of the emergency services by up to 50 percent throughout Europe, and reduce the number of fatalities on the road by around 10 percent.

In the event of an accident, eCall is used to independently send an emergency call to the emergency call center via the mobile network. Details such as the location, the precise time of the accident, the number of passengers and the type of fuel are transmitted.

As a leading supplier of eSIM chips, Infineon is keen to highlight that car manufacturers like Daimler already use its eSIM security controllers for the eCall feature. The Mercedes-Benz “Mercedes me connect” system, for example, not only offers the emergency call functionality required by law (“Mercedes-Benz eCall”), but also services that go much further. These include accident management, breakdown and maintenance management, remote vehicle diagnostics, and remote services for customers. The voice and data connection in these telematics services is controlled by a device in the vehicle usually known as the telematics control unit or connectivity module. The latest generation of connectivity modules from Mercedes-Benz is based on a telephone module that can log on to 2G, 3G and 4G mobile networks. The vehicle establishes a mobile connection via the network and accesses data (such as traffic data or infotainment services) from the Internet. A SIM card would normally be required to identify the vehicle in the mobile network. This is now done by a firmly built in eSIM chip from Infineon.

The eSIM works much like a SIM card in mobile phones, but is much smaller and more robust. Apart from the eCall, the eSIM from Infineon has many other functions that make driving safer and more convenient, such as updating software over-the-air (SOTA), vehicle-to-infrastructure communication or on-board multimedia. Infineon is currently the main supplier for leading international car manufacturers.

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