Ford Files Patent for Cryptocurrency Technology which Will Pay Cars to Go Faster
Several car companies like Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Porsche have made a move into blockchain-based initiatives. The automotive industry has shown a great deal of interest in the area and recently American automotive giant, Ford also announced that it has filed a patent for car-to-car cryptocurrency transactions technology.
This system, over time, might get add-on features which will enable passengers to make online purchases and retail transactions. So far, no such confirmations have been made by the car company. Ford revealed that this system will help develop a mechanism which will use a blockchain setup to create a decentralized network, enabling vehicle-to-vehicle co-operation in congested traffic conditions.
The patent describes this as a ‘Cooperatively Managed Merge and Pass (CMMP) system'. The system will be designed to monitor, record and evaluate driving behavior by a network of vehicles. This information will be at the disposal of drivers who can then leverage the data via a distributed network to alter the traffic conditions. Drivers can change the environment to better suit their driving preferences. The system will enable drivers to make monetary proposals in a vehicle to vehicle network which will act as a tool of convenience and incentivize alleviation of traffic congestion. This will be facilitated by the fact that the network of cars will form a collective which can modify their speeds.
An example of this system will play out in the following manner. A customer of this service for any reason will use this system to purchase services from merchant vehicles. The customer vehicle can ask merchant vehicles to increase their speed in light traffic lanes and request merges and passes as required. The merchant vehicles can then voluntarily opt to merge into lanes with slower traffic and allow merchant vehicles to pass or merge into their fast-moving lanes.
The transactions will be carried out using CMMP tokens. These tokens will relay messages between the vehicle cooperative validating and authorizing transactions which will be carried out. The payments will be made with the use of a cryptocurrency. The cryptocurrency will be utilized on a credit basis using the CMMP tokens. Time will be factored into the transactions to compute the overall cost. For instance, a businessman running late for an important meeting can request a merchant vehicle or a host of merchant vehicles to clear the lane for a certain period. The customer will then be charged a few CMMP tokens every minute or any other specified period of time, till he or she stops using the service of this vehicle cooperative.
Ford is the first mass-market car manufacturer who has invested in a blockchain-based system technology. Other investments in the fields have come from premium, European carmakers. This includes Mercedes-Benz which has developed a blockchain-based rewards program which uses MobiCoins. Porsche on the other hand is limiting the application of its blockchain-based technology to its smart vehicle start-ups. Finally, fellow German carmaker, BMW is applying this technology on an industrial scale and will use a blockchain-ready supply chain management system.
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