According to Reuters, Jaguar Land Rover (the UK’s largest car manufacturer and a whole-owned subsidiary of India’s Tata Motors), which is responsible for the “design, manufacture and marketing of both Jaguar and Land Rover products”, is “testing software that will allow drivers of its cars to earn the IOTA cryptocurrency as a reward for sharing data.”

Here is how the IOTA Foundation describes IOTA:

“IOTA is a revolutionary new transaction settlement and data transfer layer for the Internet of Things (IoT). It is based on a new distributed ledger technology, the Tangle, which overcomes the inefficiencies of current Blockchain designs and introduces a new way of reaching consensus in a decentralized peer-to-peer system. Using IOTA, for the first time ever, people and machines can transfer money and/or data without any transaction fees in a trustless, permissionless, and decentralized environment. This means that even nano-payments are possible without the need for a trusted intermediary of any kind.”

Apparently, Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) is working with the IOTA Foundation to develop “smart wallet” technology that would reward drivers of its cars ” with IOTA coins for actions such as enabling their vehicles to automatically report useful data, such as traffic congestion or potholes to navigation providers or local authorities.” The Reuters report also says that another way for drivers to earn IOTA is if the car is part of a ride-sharing program. 

IOTA Foundation says via a blog post that drivers “could then redeem these for rewards such as coffee, or conveniently use them to automatically pay tolls, parking fees and for smart charging electric vehicles,” and that “‘Smart Wallet’ removes the need for drivers to hunt for loose change or sign up to multiple accounts to pay for a variety of everyday services.”

Also, IOTA Foundation believes that other benefits of this system are that “it requires no transaction fee to operate and over time transactions will get faster across the entire network, forecast to include some 75 billion connected devices by 2025.”  

The research “forms part of Jaguar Land Rover’s Destination Zero strategy which aims to achieve zero emissions, zero accidents and zero congestion,” and that part of “reaching this target is developing a shared economy where the vehicle plays an integral role as a data gatherer in the smart city of the future” One example it gives is that “the connected ‘Smart Wallet’ services will promote a reduction in congestion with the sharing of live traffic updates and offering alternative routes to drivers, reducing tailpipe emissions from idling in traffic.”

Russell Vickers, JLR Software Architect, said: 

“The connected car technologies we are developing will be transformative and truly turn your Jaguar or Land Rover into a third space, in addition to your home or office. In the future an autonomous car could drive itself to a charging station, recharge and pay, while its owner could choose to participate in the sharing economy — earning rewards from sharing useful data such as warning other cars of traffic jams.”

Holger Köther, director of partnerships at IOTA Foundation, had this to say:

“Our distributed ledger technology is perfectly suited to enable machine-to-machine payments for smart charging, parking and tolls, in addition to creating opportunities for drivers to earn their own digital currency. We are excited to partner with Jaguar Land Rover in implementing its IOTA-powered car wallet, delivering a major convenience benefit for their customers worldwide.”

Dominik Schiener, IOTA co-founder and co-chairman of its board, told Reuters:

“The smart wallet technology … can be easily adapted into all new vehicles. IOTA wants to enable interoperability with all these different players. So there is no Jaguar coin, no BMW coin, but one universal token for this machine economy.”

The news has caused the IOTA price to surge, with CryptoCompare showing that it is currently trading at $0.3104, up 15.26% in the past 24-hour period:

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