Ericsson used to be a major player in mobile. So last night when I caught up with Kasim Alfalahi, CIPO and Senior Vice President at Ericsson (pictured on right), I had to ask: is Ericsson still trying to be a leader in this space?
“We are the world leader with respect to infrastructure,” Alfalahi told me on the convention floor of CES. “Our customers are AT&T, Verizon, Sprint… We are also a world leader with respect to where we take care of the infrastructure for the operators. In that space, we are the market leader. With respect to devices, as you know, we used to have Sony Ericsson, which was a joint venture between Ericsson and Sony. Our shares of that company we sold a year and a few months ago in November of 2011.”
But a lot of companies that entered the mobile space only to leave a short while later are now re-entering. Intel is just one example of a major player reemerging in mobile. Is this something Ericson will similarly do in the coming years?
“You never know exactly what you’re going to do in five years or ten years,” Alfalahi admits. “We made a conscious decision a year ago to basically sell our shares of that mobile business, so Ericsson is very much focused on the infrastructure of the service for the network.”
What Ericsson is focused on today at CES is the company’s new alliances in the automobile sector. Volvo Car Group and Ericsson are out in full force in Las Vegas to tout their joint efforts in the technical development of innovations for automotive internet services.
Volvo is delivering its “expertise in driver behavior” and “traffic security requirements” while Ericsson brings a vast wealth of experience through its consulting and systems integration. The result is a winning pair that’s poised to make automobiles smarter than previously thought possible.
Connected Vehicle Cloud based on Ericsson’s Multiservice Delivery Platform will provide infotainment, apps and communication services in new Volvo cars.
“We clearly see that cars in the near future will integrate the same level of digital services that consumers today are used to have in their homes or at work. This is a strategically important part of Volvo Cars’ investments for the future where we intend to take a leading position,” says Lex Kerssemakers, Senior Vice President Product Strategy and Vehicle Line Management at Volvo Cars.
Are you on board yet for the evolution of connected cars?