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The Volkswagen Group writes its own digital future in Lisbon

8.11.2018
The Volkswagen Group writes its own digital future in Lisbon

At the WebSummit 2018 the Volkswagen Group presents a new intelligent traffic management system and inaugurates the new Software Development Centre.

The Volkswagen Group continues to expand its software competence and is making progress in its digital transformation. At the WebSummit in Lisbon, one of the most important international technology conferences, the Group and the quantum computing company D-Wave presented an intelligent traffic management system which will replace forecasting for urban traffic volumes with precise calculations by a quantum computer. In the Portuguese capital, the Group also inaugurated the “Software Development Centre Lisbon” (SDC Lisbon), a new centre where specialist IT teams focus on the development of advanced software solutions for digital ecosystems and cloud services.

More efficient traffic thanks to quantum computing

To develop the new intelligent traffic management system, Volkswagen experts first analyse anonymised movement data (from smartphones or transmitters in vehicles) in order to calculate traffic accumulation and the number of people involved. The second step, optimisation, is completed with a quantum algorithm. For example, it is possible to assign an exact number of vehicles to different destinations (“demand spots”) on a predictive basis to provide transportation for all the waiting passengers. This is how public transportation organisations, taxi companies, and transport service providers will be able to deploy their fleets considerably more efficiently while minimising waiting times for passengers. 

The algorithm will be tested in Barcelona, where an adequate database already exists: thus, the Group’s experts are cooperating with the telecommunications service provider Orange and the data science specialist Teralytics. Broadly speaking, the algorithm could be adapted to all sizes cities. In addition to the application for which it was designed, the algorithm could potentially be applied also to traffic infrastructure and vehicle networking, especially as it relates to autonomous vehicles.

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Extreme programming at the heart of Lisbon

The SDC Lisbon was inaugurated on November 6th in presence of the President of the Portuguese Republic Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa. Here, 300 IT specialists will develop software mainly for the digital ecosystems and internal corporate processes of the Group. 100 of these specialists will work on cloud-based services specifically for the commercial vehicle sector for MAN Truck & Bus. 

Software development for new digital services is to become a core competence for Volkswagen”, said Martin Hofmann, CIO of the Volkswagen Group. “We are building up the know-how required for this purpose in a decentralised manner. we must go where the best people are located in order to recruit top talent. The Volkswagen SDCs are unique in the technological landscape: they combine a start-up atmosphere and methods such as extreme programming and pairing with long term stability”.

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The new SDC Lisbon is the third facility of its type; Volkswagen already operates two software development centres with several hundred IT experts in Wolfsburg and Berlin. The SDCs represent a strategic advantage to satisfy the growing demand of advanced software solutions within the Group, whose digital competencies are continuously expanding thanks to partnerships in the technology field and participations in other companies.

SourceVolkswagen AG 

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