150m connected cars worldwide by 2020

A report has found that a staggering 150 million cars will be connected to the internet by 2020 – with up to three quarters of them creating and sharing data.

Many of these will be using existing systems such as Apple’s CarPlay, which is already available on models from a host of manufacturers, including Ferrari, Volvo and Mercedes-Benz.

Land Rover, Audi and BMW have all said they will offer CarPlay in future models.

In the report, analyst Thilo Koslowski said:

“Central computing systems and even single chips will take on more functionality regarding the control of driver assistance and infotainment systems. That means that there will be a ‘central point of control’ that potentially can get compromised.

“In the long-term that could mean that national highway patrols in the future will have to shift their focus from driving regulations to cyber security enforcement.”

Connected cars will make life easier for the average driver – for example, they’ll be able to interact with each other to alert motorists of congestion, or give warnings about speed traps.

They may even be able to realise that you’re leaving work, notify your local takeaway and turn the heating on at home.

However, some people are concerned that connected cars can be used to spy on drivers. Many insurance companies already offer discounts for cars fitted with black box telematics devices – and previously TomTom has got itself into hot water for selling data to Dutch police on where people are most likely to speed.