Audi claims to have been the first to use a “vehicle technology” called TLI that communicates between vehicles and traffic lights to provide time for green, green light, optimized speed cues and help drivers minimize stop-and-go journeys
TLI is now available at 22,000 intersections in 20 major metropolitan areas and 60 cities and regions in the United States.
Audi also claims the first LTE WiFi hotspot in the vehicle and an integrated toll module and is planning more like “mobile communications for everything”.
The automaker introduced TLI in 2016 in production vehicles with only a “handful” of connected signals. Five years later, in partnership with Traffic Technology Services, it has passed 22,000 contiguous intersections operated by 60 agencies in the United States, with New York City, Los Angeles, and San Francisco recently added.
The Recommended Green Light Speed Recommendations may provide a recommended speed to the limit to help the driver ride a “green wave”.
Both a report from Audi Travolution and a report from the US Department of Transportation’s AERIS research program found that minimizing stop-and-go trips can result in more than 15% greater fuel efficiency if drivers are able to react to predicted traffic light changes. Audi considers this to be “essential, since in-vehicle technologies and lightweight construction materials in vehicles that contribute to efficiency can often have greater cost consequences for the vehicle development of the next generation than tools that contribute to small adjustments to driving behavior.”
TLI works over an LTE signal that requires a connectivity subscription. An attached traffic signal communicates with servers that collect data and recognize patterns to make predictions about that signal, and these servers project it back into a vehicle. Machine learning can also extend TLI where signal controllers may not be connected. Vehicles only use data from signals that have a high level of confidence. Signals will continue to be added monthly for drivers using TLI.
Originally launched in Portland, Oregon and Las Vegas, the service has recently expanded to the US, Canada and some parts of Europe.
The first TLI deployment often focuses on larger Audi sales markets.
Last year, the automaker began initial trials in Northern Virginia and Alpharetta, Georgia, aiming to refine the real-life benefits of the latest connected vehicle-to-everything technology.
Advanced Mobile-Vehicle-to-Everything Mobility Communications (C-V2X) uses the existing cellular network infrastructure with direct messages in cars. The aim is to increase safety for unprotected road users, for example road workers on duty in Northern Virginia or warnings for drivers approaching school zones and school buses. Last November, the US Federal Communications Commission reorganized the 5.9 GHz communications spectrum and decided that C-V2X is the networked vehicle technology of choice for the US.