Top Tips in Automotive Software Development

Applications are more and more broadly involved in our lives, as they are made into the outcomes that we regularly apply. The number of software systems in a current car is a hundred times greater than the number of onboard software in an F22 plane. What’s more, this number remains to expand, with innovations emerging in relevant cars, plus a time towards self-driving, hybrid including electrical transports.

“Ten years ago, software considered for only 20% of a car’s value price and did not change much from design to design. Now 80% of all discovery and aggressive success comes from a mixture of:

  • Software;
  • Electronics;
  • electrical operations, not tools, ”says Siegmar Haasis, head of engineering for Mercedes Benz at Daimler.

Automotive software development has become a crucial component in product development. Consequently, it must be intimately united with all other methods of treatment and technological development of product. This is not an simple job: the growth of software (software) is more durable and secure, using extremely effective iterative methods. They are hard to synchronize with building design, which normally takes much longer.

Combining these two very different approaches requires tight integration of software development means into the goods creation process. At the identical period, development environments should remain high-performance and easy-to-use for programmers. The combination of application lifecycle management (ALM) and product lifecycle management (PLM) tools enables effective interdisciplinary collaboration of specialists.

The challenge of tight integration of ALM and PLM technologies is becoming more and more urgent

Complex interactions between software and other elements of smart products lead to serious problems at the junctions of systems created by different groups of developers. Let’s say you receive an error message in a system that is not present at all on the car. Another example: a newly purchased SUV is brought to the dealer for installation of the navigation software, and at home it is discovered that after a software update the remote garage door opener button installed in the car has stopped working.

Software problems are not always limited to minor inconveniences. Car reviews and warranty repairs, the number of which is constantly growing, is a very costly business. In 2016, vehicle defect recalls hit a record 927. In the US alone, 53.2 million vehicles were recalled, and bugs are increasingly causing recalls.

Currently, there is a trend in software like transition to the active release of unique, personalized products, which is associated with the introduction of additive production processes (for example, 3D printing). In such a situation, the power of the correct mixtures of software version plus product performance displays a prerequisite for the provision of effective technical support. Rapid prototyping technology has become commonplace, dramatically reducing the chance it takes to develop new products. These trends further underscore the relevance of integrating product and software development processes with tools such as digital twins.

The digital twin, integrated with software development tools, is the current digital version of the product. It greatly simplifies the manufacture and maintenance of products, making these processes much more flexible and faster. But creating a digital twin requires the right tools to work together.

Even without thinking about this long term, the integration of product development and processes will yield positive results very quickly. Thanks to the availability of accurate information about which parts, assemblies and modules are used in a particular series of cars produced at many factories around the world – up to an individual car with a specific VIN number – Ford was able to correct errors in the software of the electronic control module without replacing the module itself. The company saved $ 100 million over three years by reducing warranty costs. And this is not only an excellent financial result, but also an increase in customer satisfaction.

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