AAPEX 2014 is almost upon us, and while there is always a focus on what is happening on the trade show floor, more and more attendees are excited about the educational sessions that will be occurring during the show. These sessions tend to reflect the issues that are hot on the minds of the industry, which helps explain why many of this year’s seminars will focus on the impact of telematics on the auto care industry. Just a few years ago, the issue barely warranted notice at the show, but now the ability of vehicles to communicate with car owners, shops and others in the distribution chain is front and center on the minds of auto care industry leaders.
Of course, a central element of this discussion is who will control the data being transmitted from a vehicle, the car owner or the vehicle manufacturer. As currently configured, the data coming off a car, which includes a lot of diagnostic, repair and personal information of the car owner, goes only to the manufacturers. Changing this scenario to providing car owner control is a major goal of the Auto Care Association.
However, this is a very complex issue with few clear answers. For example, if access to the systems was required by legislation, how would that actually occur? How would the independent auto care industry use the information being transmitted by those vehicles if our industry had access to the data being sent by it? What is the business model? Should car owners be charged or should the shop pay the cost of the system based on the benefits of obtaining access to the car owner’s data?
While there is a lot to get your arms around, fortunately, AAPEX will give you the opportunity to learn more about the issue of telematics and to begin the thought process of how it would apply to your business. There are three interesting sessions that will take place during the show, listed below, that cover the issue from different vantage points. Hopefully, you find time to get to one or more of these sessions which will take place in Marco Polo Rooms 704-705 at The Venetian. Additional information on all of the educational sessions can be found on the AAPEX website athttp://www.aapexshow.com/2014/public/enter.aspx.
The Telematics Business Model for WarehouseDistributors
Tuesday, November 4, 3:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Speaker: Jim Dykstra, Aftermarket Telematics Technologies
The independent auto care industry has learned how telematics technology has the potential to make it increasingly difficult to compete with OEs for parts sales and service and repair work. Many warehouse distributors are currently researching how they can take advantage of telematics to direct vehicle owners to their repair shop customers, but often are not sure what type of business model will work best. This session outlines what WDs need to consider when developing a telematics business model. This session is not about telematics technology, but instead the use of this technology to enhance traditional sales.
AftermarketTelematics and the Connected Car
Wednesday, Nov. 5, 2 p.m. - 3 p.m.
Speakers: Derek Kaufman, C3 Network,Inc.; Aaron Lowe, Auto Care Association
Telematics and the connected car are among the most challenging advances in vehicle technology. If vehicle manufacturers have the ability to communicate with their product wirelessly and perform remote diagnostics, how will that impact the independent auto care and service industry? The Aftermarket Telematics Task Force was formed to represent a unified industry voice in this issue and develop an open technical solution that offers consumers the right to choose where information from their vehicle is sent. Representatives of the Task Force will brief the industry on progress and recent activity.
Diagnosing the Connected Vehicle
Thursday, Nov. 6, 7:30 a.m. - 8:30 a.m.
Speaker: Ben Johnson, Mitchell1
This presentation describes the changing role of the diagnostician and how to most effectively utilize all information resources available to technicians for efficient and accurate diagnosis of the vehicle. The session will focus on analytic and diagnostic strategies when incorporating OE information as well as vehicle data and industry experience. The diagnostic process changes from the point of vehicle arrival practiced today to the point of vehicle symptom detection using telematics will be discussed and how telematics will enable the technician to work more effectively.