The Automotive Over the Air Update Testbed

The Automotive Over-The-Air Updates Testbed

Auto, device and product manufacturers use over-the-air (OTA) updates to deliver critical information to devices within the vehicle to ensure that the software is working correctly. Soon, the days of bringing your vehicle (or a fleet of vehicles) into a dealership in order to power up the latest version of your GPS software, Apple Car Play, fleet tracking and management tools will be over; more specifically “over-the-air.”

The Automotive Over-The-Air (AOTA) Updates Testbed demonstrates how software may be remotely managed on a fleet of vehicles. Software can be deployed, updated, and replaced. The testbed uses a microservices architecture is used to provide maximum functional improvement with minimal software change. This testbed covers standard vehicle control and data handling: collection, filtering, and analysis. The solution also addresses the specific automotive safety risks in the cybersecurity realm. It introduces Li-Fi as a complementary wireless communication option for such updates as well as general V2X communication.

Market Segments

The primary challenges addressed are common among most IoT domains, including medical devices, industrial machines, or vehicles.

  • Automotive (OTA, connected vehicles, V2X)
  • Healthcare (Medical Devices)
  • Manufacturing (Industrial Machines)


The auto industry has long been a front-runner in tech-savvy innovations, and OTA updates are no exception. OTA presents a scalable solution that can apply across many industries beyond automotive, and that’s what makes it so powerful. OTA is a direct result of industries transforming digitally towards software and artificial intelligence -- both of which require that the solution provider looks into the entire dev-ops cycle. One key component is bridging the IT to OT gap. This gap is closed via OTA, but doing so smartly is critical.

Any time that a device is connected to the internet, it’s entered the “Wild West.” Wireless connections, and updates sent using a wireless connection, are inherently risky for the introduction of risks like malware, downtime, and expose personal information. Participants in the IIC’s Testbed program undergo rigorous security review to ensure the trustworthiness of the entire solution.

Read more about Trustworthiness and download the IIC’s Trustworthiness Foundations Framework here.

Goals and Commercial Benefits

The AOTA Testbed represents significantly more than pushing software over the network. Overall emphasis is placed on the following:

  • Understanding and limiting updates to what is required.
  • Ensuring that only the systems where the update is authorized are updated.
  • The ability to update any vehicle or device (almost) anywhere.
  • Reverting any update without exception.
  • Updating, within reason, a running system.
  • Ensuring that only authorized software can be deployed.
  • Never compromising the critical elements of system trustworthiness: security, safety, integrity, privacy, resilience, or robustness of the system.
  • Introducing the use Li-Fi for OTA updates and V2X communication to address the challenges associated with RF, such as signal interference/jamming and limited capacity.
  • Ensuring the safety and security of the passengers as a priority.

The Importance of the AOTA Solution

  • Incorporates and relates to multiple technologies and initiatives that are at the core of IIC's mission.
  • The concept and technologies fall within IIC Distribution Delivery Network and IIC Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS).
  • The solution incorporates Cyber Security elements related to OTA, ITS, and connected vehicles.
  • Provides real-world validation for crucial elements in the automotive industry.
  • Positions IIC as a thought leader in over-the-updates and connected vehicle aspects of the automotive industry.
  • Fosters collaboration amongst IIC members and non-members in the automotive, cyber security, and other industries that rely on OTA updates.

Current Member Participants:

  • AASA Inc.
  • Aicas


download Testbed Brochure  download Info Deck