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In AT&T’s smart city future, cars talk to each other and play nice

When driving, you invariably end up depending on slight communications with other drivers to ensure everyone’s safety. In AT&T’s smart city future, the cars will do the communicating with each other. Digital Trends spoke with Joe Mosele, vice president of internet of things solutions at AT&T Mobility, at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show about how technology is inspiring one of the greatest advancements in the history of the automotive industry.

“This is the biggest transformation of the automotive industry in the last 100 years,” Mosele said of the recent wave of internet of things integration in cars. Mosele touted AT&T’s past contributions to the revolution — remote control car locks, built-in Wi-Fi hot spots — but harped on AT&T focusing on connecting cars deeper by having them talk to one another. AT&T announced new partnerships with Ford and Delphi at CES to develop and implement vehicle-to-anything (V2X) communication. The companies plans to integrate V2X with AT&T’s smart cities’ infrastructure so drivers can be notified of approaching vehicles and possible traffic accidents over AT&T’s LTE network.

More: AT&T is applying its communication expertise to Ford and Honda vehicles

Mosele says the government will be the “catalyst” to getting all cars connected, even suggesting a federal mandate for all older cars to be retrofitted with connective technology. Yes, your dad’s 1970 Cadillac DeVille will have to turn into KITT from Knight Rider in AT&T’s smart city future.

Cars may be able to tell the other one when there’s trouble ahead, but it’s still up to a human to decide how to avoid it, and we make mistakes. Mosele says there will come a time when there are no accidents — it will be when there are no people driving. “We’re years away from a society where nobody’s driving, where nobody owns their own car,” Mosele attests before claiming it will happen, but not in the near future.

The smart car is another component of AT&T’s smart cities initative. AT&T first revealed its framework for smart cities last year around this time; naming Atlanta, the Georgia Institute of Technology, Chicago, and Dallas the initial spotlight cities. This year AT&T have added  infrastructure, citizen engagement, transportation, and public safety as well as naming Portland, Oregon, the latest city it will spotlight.

Digital Trends is live all week at CES 2017 in Las Vegas. Check out our continuing coverage live on YouTube, Facebook, #DTces, and DigitalTrends.com/ces/.