New dual-eSIM connectivity for the Land Rover Defender family is being showcased at CES 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The New Defender is claimed to be the first vehicle with two embedded LTE modems for enhanced connectivity, while the vehicle’s new Pivi Pro infotainment system shares electronic hardware with the latest smartphones.
The “fast and intuitive” Pivi Pro system enables customers to make full use of the Software-Over-The-Air (SOTA) technology in the New Defender without compromising the system’s ability to stream music and connect to apps. With its own designated LTE modem and eSIM, the SOTA technology is said to operate in the background without affecting the day-to-day connectivity provided by the separate modem and eSIM in the infotainment module.
The always-on, connected Pivi Pro setup sits at the heart of the cabin in the New Defender. A 10in high-resolution touchscreen allows customers to control numerous aspects of the vehicle using the same processing hardware as the latest smartphones. In addition, customers can connect two mobile devices at once using Bluetooth.
“With one LTE modem and eSIM dedicated to the Software-Over-The-Air (SOTA) technology and the same setup looking after music streaming and apps, New Defender has the digital capacity to keep customers connected, updated and entertained at all times anywhere in the world,” said Peter Virk, director of Connected Car and Future Technology, Jaguar Land Rover. “You could liken the design to a brain, with each half enjoying its own connection for unrivaled and uninterrupted service. Like the brain, one side of the system looks after logical functions, like SOTA, while the other takes care of more creative tasks.”
Pivi Pro is equipped with its own battery, so the system is always on and able to respond immediately on startup. As a result, the navigation is ready to accept new destinations the moment the driver sits in the vehicle. The system allows customers to access to the latest software updates remotely – including navigation mapping data – without the need to visit retailers for updates to be installed.
Land Rover has confirmed the first New Defender SUVs will feature more SOTA capability than originally projected, across 16 individual electronic control modules rather than the previously announced 14. Engineers estimate that in-dealer software updates will be a thing of the past for Defender customers before the end of 2021 as additional SOTA modules take the total to more than 45.