LIVE FROM GSMA MOBILE 360 EUROPE, BRUSSELS: Connected and self-driving vehicle experts said the auto industry faces myriad barriers in terms of innovation, including the human factor and technical limitations.

Stephane Barbier, chief development officer at smart city lab Transpolis (pictured, second from right) pointed out even the fact autonomous vehicles will be completely new to humans and will take some getting used to is something which must be considered. Legal aspects are another factor: who takes responsibility, and settles insurance claims, if accidents occur?

He said current infrastructure must be improved to enable better dialogue between vehicles and their environemnts.

While Antoine Aubert, director public policy, EU Strategy at taxi booking app company Uber (pictured, third from right), said limitations in the ability to carry out real world tests is a major constraint, Alin Stanescu, senior manager government affairs Europe at Qualcomm (pictured, far left), said the focus should be on better communication between sectors and on ideas about how to invest in infrastructure.

“In the end we can connect cars but the question is how are we transforming the existing infrastructure today to make it future proof and to change investment models?”

Stanescu said talking about 5G networks and mobile broadband is well and good, but the industry needs to consider ways in which other sectors can cooperate.

He also pointed out the need for more spectrum: “this is something that needs to be looked into quite soon”.

Speaking on connectivity, Joost Vantomme, smart mobility director at the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (pictured, second from left), said 5G is important, but not needed “everywhere for everything” as many tasks can be completed by 4G.

What he was concerned about, though, was cross-border connectivity. This requires a seamless handover of signals when a vehicle crosses a border, and a drop in connection of even a millisecond would not work, he said citing truck platoons as an example.