SK Telecom said it has introduced the first commercial mobile telematics service in China.
The South Korean mobile services provider said its E-MIV service will allow customers to use their mobile phones to protect, control and manage their cars.
The system is currently an option that can be installed in cars at the dealership, but SK Telecom said its goal is to eventually have it built directly into cars on the production line.
"Building on the experience of commercializing the MIV service in Shenzhen, SK Telecom plans to further expand its presence in China,” said Lee Jin-Woo, the company’s senior vice president and head of data business.
SK Telecom first developed E-MIV, which is known as MIV in Korea, in 2009. It launched E-MIV through its Chinese subsdiary Shenzhen E-eye High Tech. Co., Ltd (Shenzhen E-eye).
Key features of the service include automobile location tracking and the use of a smartphone to control various functions of the car.
E-MIV also lets users store vehicle operation information and maintenance history. And plans are underway to add vehicle diagnosis services next year.
E-MIV equipped cars have a GPS terminal on board that can send text messages to a mobile phone. That happens, for example, when a door is forcefully opened or a vehicle is being moved without permission.
Users can access E-MIV through any smartphone, regardless of operating system. It is web-based and can be accessed through any browser.
In 2007, SK Telecom purchased a controlling 65.5 percent stake in Shenzhen E-eye, a Chinese GPS service provider. Shenzhen E-eye's GPS-based services, which include stolen vehicle location tracking, attracted around 30,000 customers and achieved 10 billion Korean won in revenues.
SK Telecom said it plans to maintain its leadership in the mobile telematics field by developing diverse MIV services including one for electric vehicles.
By Arjen Bongard