- June 17, 2020
Drive by Joystick
Table of Contents
Innovation Overview 3
Engineering Concepts 4
Investors and Collaboration Opportunities 6
Business Analysis and Development of Business Growth 8
SWOT analysis 9
Evaluation through the Five-Force Model 14
Supplier power 14
Buyer power 15
Competitive rivalry 16
The threat of substitution 16
Threat of new entry 17
Evaluation of Customer Segment 17
Other marketing strategies 18
Pricing strategy 18
Service/product strategy 18
Positioning strategy 18
Promotional strategy 19
Location strategy 19
Joysticktechnology has a considerable interesting history that involvedmechanical linkages between the user and a physical apparatus ordevice that could only be moved in different directions. It wasbasically referred to as “a stick”, “handle” or “just a“control lever”. The major technological challenge with the crudejoystick was that the user could only control it within the physicallimit which they could force they could use to mechanically controlit. The adoption of electrical circuit technology through the changesin current levels and the voltage was the game changer and it led tothe invention of the “joystick,” which is also being improvedover the years to make it possible for people with mechanicallocomotion challenges and nerve problems. Aerospace engineers firstused a joystick to control elevators and ailerons (Morris, 2015).Electrical signals were used to move different mechanical parts of aplane in the desired direction. An individual who needed to use ajoystick only needed to exert a small amount of force in order toaccomplish many tasks with ease than what they could possibly achievebefore the adoption of electrical circuitry. The term “joy”denotes the feeling of joy felt by users of improved controlledlevers or handles and therefore it was called “joystick.” Today,the joystick is so widespread around the world and known by the samename. Numerous applications use joystick applications of electronicsignaling. This report is about developing a joystick controlled carwhere various technologies such as the drive-by-wire technology areapplied to develop it. The people who are considered for joystickvehicles are those with muscular diseases that impair their movement.In some cases, the technology is useful for people with spinalinjuries and individuals without legs and arms. All people usingelectrical wheelchairs are eligible for a joystick controlled car. Inthis regards, the report provides an analysis of the product, thecurrent market, and the opportunities or threats present in thesector of operation.
Innovationprogress for joystick-controlled cars revolves around the safety ofthe driver. The joystick system is very advanced and it demands highstandards of safety in order to guarantee the driver safety. Besides,the innovation process depends on the changing regulatoryenvironment. Sweden has a progressive regulatory environment forjoystick cars with detailed requirements that are partly responsiblefor the many trials that characterize joystick controlled carmanufacturers. A joystick car needs considerable levels of mentalresources for the driver to control it. The resources depend on thenature of the exchange of information or how it flows between thedriver and the entire system and how the system responds to movementsthe driver makes during control.
Velocityand steering of the joystick will use pulse-position modulation. Thedriver first sets a local square-wave at 68Hz (Mahajan,Spaeth, Dicianno, Brown, & Cooper, 2014). The potentiometers inthe joystick change that square-wave to start the cut-off theamplifier loops so that their outputs are inverted and channeled tobuffer the original square-wave. The interaction between the createdlocal square-wave and the joystick potentiometers creates 0.2 mspulses that happen intermittently according to time delays and thenumber of deflections made by the joystick (Mahajanet al., 2014 Morris, 2015). The 0.2 ms pulses drive the bias spot ofthe car’s transmitter output amplifier towards make the carrierblank when the pulses are on. The car’s band will determine therange of MHz for the carrier, which ideally ranges between 28.1MHzand 28.5 MHz (Mahajanet al., 2014). The diagram below indicates the conceptual engineeringaspects of the pulse modulation that takes place in the joystick car.
Asshown in the diagram above, the joystick in the car within a range of±20°. The velocity joystick changes time (t2) between pulse two andpulses three. The steering joystick changes time (t1) between pulse 1and pulses 2. The diagram simply demonstrates an idea control actionplot between duration t1 and t2, which are equal to 1.5ms(t1=t2=1.5ms) and it puts the car at rest as it steers right head.The joystick operation is nonlinear with 100% steering and velocitycontrol within only 5 degrees of movement. The driver actually usesvery little mechanical energy to control the car.
Consideringthat there has been a lot of pessimism in the motor industry aboutthe prospects of having a viable and commercially acceptable joystickcar, each of the components of the system in the car has newinnovations that must be patented. The Company making the Joystickcar will have to follow all the processes of getting the utility anddesign patents as provided for in the U.S. Patent and Trademark laws.The innovations that the Company will seek to protect include:
The new control system of the vehicle differs with models made by other motor companies- The entire control system involves the conversion of mechanical signals into electrical signals to enable the driver to carry out such functions as steering and acceleration/deceleration.
The technology behind the remote manipulator, accelerator pedal, and the rotary steering shaft- The remote manipulator has two movement axes-one controls the movement of the steering shaft and the second axis causes the displacement of the accelerator pedal when the driver exerts very minimal force.
Thedesign patent targets the unique configuration of the car system,model, and individual parts. The utility patent will protect theunique technologies that make the joystick car different from theearlier models and possibly viable to be recommended as a basicutility in the country. The utility patent will take a period of 20years as provided for in the current law. The design patent willenable Company engineers and innovators to continue the process ofinnovation to make the car more user-friendly for people withmechanical challenges. The importance of investing in patents is thatthe company will be able to get a meaningful collaboration with othercompanies interested in developing joystick technology. Withoutpatent protection, the long strides of innovations that have improvedthe functionality of various parts to make the entire control systemof the joystick car may end up in the hands of wrong people and thecompany may face the challenge of making a legal claim to preventlosses.
Investorsand Collaboration Opportunities
Investorand collaboration opportunities lie in making the car more efficientfor the user in terms of the steering system, brake application, andthe ease for the driver perform primary tasks while driving the car.There is an increasing attention among venture capitalists and othertypes of lenders to social enterprises. Providing cars that willenable people with locomotion disabilities to move easily andconveniently is a definitely a social enterprise. The Company willcreate alliances with Companies such as the French SchneiderElectric, which has an Energy Access Fund recognized all over theworld, Danone, and Blue Orange so that they can provide financial andlogistical assistance that will push the project forward. The Companyneeds to communicate more other social angel investors that are readyto help the company mitigate its investment risk. A company such asCentrica will be a vital collaborator for the company because itbrings expertise on issues of electricity. It also has investors thathave a lot of experience in helping innovative companies grow toanother level. The Company is currently developing new designs,operating controls, and looking for power sources that are verycostly. The current technology has features that should be improved.The collaborations and investment opportunities for the companyshould target to the engineering aspects of the joystick car thatpose an efficiency challenge. As long as a technology developedthrough sufficient funding has the ability to make the car easy touse by persons with mobility challenges, they present high returnsbecause it denotes more value for the user. The collaborations withother companies and investors will help it get funds to deal with thefollowing challenges:
Reducetime delays in the steering system- Time delays in the steeringsystem of the car is caused by lack of active feedback and lack ofinertia in the joystick. The company has engineers that can developfast steering servos that in order to reduce time delays. There is noprecedent technology for developing fast steering servos that willcause the steering system to respond quite rapidly control actions bythe driver (Lodha,Mandai, & Charbon, 2013).
Makeit easier for the driver to learn how to apply brake- The brakes ofthe car are controlled by the angle. However, the driver has no ideathe effect of a press on the breaking pedal because they do notreceive feedback. The nonlinear task of breaking makes it quitementally challenging for the driving than it is actually necessary.Substantial funding is needed to make the breaking system integratedwith the accelerating system. The driver should be able to applybrakes as a response to signals alerts on issues such as a speedlimit, a bump ahead, or a two-lane road.
Eliminateinterferences between the primary tasks of the driver- As everythingcurrently stands the operating control of the car is mainly doneusing the angle at the same pivot point in lateral and longitudinalmovements. More funds are required to develop a system where thedriver can receive more data concerning the response of the structureto the movements a person makes. A new sensor technology using rapidelectric signals should be able to send back signals to the operatingsystem.
BusinessAnalysis and Development of Business Growth
Themarket is ripe for joystick cars because there are many people withdisabilities caused by accidents and different medical conditionsthat lack efficient ways to move around and go about their dailylives. At this stage, cost reduction is the biggest challenge for thecompany because components that will constitute various parts of thesystem are still in their trial and development stage. Costs aretherefore likely to go up whenever a more efficient component has tobe bought or developed. A strategic analysis of the Company is thebest way to understand the market position of the Company engaged indeveloping the joystick controlled car. The standards tools to carryout the strategic analysis include the SWOT Analysis, the Five-ForcesModel, Customer segments, and other marketing strategies.
Theplanning process of making the joystick car follows the reality interms of technology and the financial capacity of the company to moveon the with the project to its full conclusion. The ultimate goal isfor the car to be commercially viable and used throughout the worldby people with various forms of impairments that make locomotion achallenge for them. The strengths and weaknesses are adjustable overtime in that the company will keep developing new technologies todeal with the weaknesses of the car and continue strengthen itsefficiency and the ease of its usability. The company, however,cannot change opportunities and threats, because they are external.
TheSWOT analysis for the firm
Active safety- The current technology being used by the company as an improvement of the earlier models. The Company has the technical capacity to develop vehicles that are easier to be controlled by the driver. The car has a dependable and reliable design. Joystick equipment requires very high concentration on the part of the driver than other conventional operating controls. Besides, the car’s manual informs the driver of the limitations and the possibilities available to them. Further training is often initiated to teach drivers how to adapt to driving behavior.
The car’s control unit has a duplicated system and supplementary units that remain constantly active when the vehicle is in motion. During this time, only one of the units controls the car and in the event, one of the units fails whilst the car is in motion, the control function switches automatically to the other.
Other than the primary control system, the driver can use the alternative operating controls. The alternative operating control has features that make the driver adaptive to the car in the course of time. They include the presence of transfer functions where the operations of driver get reactions throughout the system. Moreover, it can carry out the tactile transfer of control information feedback from the operating control. The joystick car has a lot of options for adaptation. The available adaptation options of the joystick car include: (a) the amount of energy need to control the joystick. (b) The measurement of the functioning control. (c) The operational extent size (d) acceleration and braking control directions. (e) Filtering and amplification reduction due to the design of the lateral function (specifically the progressive the function).
The fact there are various options for adaptation increases the chance of safe driving for drivers.
The car has sufficient active market-All primary and secondary gearshifts are placed close to the driver because they have limited strength. Secondary controls, which are very critical to the driver’s safety such as turn indicators, the horn etc., are actually placed near the driver’s head so that they can simply control through head movements.
The car has passive safety- The car does not contain parts that are directly in contact with the driver so as to avoid injuries caused by collisions during accidents. Operating controls are not directly in front of the driver and their surfaces are made in such a way as to reduce the risk of injury as much as possible.
Adaptations for the driver are not easy to make because there is no standard of the way of assessing how they should be implemented to meet the needs of a specific driver with physical disability as closely as possible.
The joystick system in the car is very flexible to the extent that adaptations may make it quite complicated to use for drivers.
The joystick system cannot be possibly aligned to all traffic situations that a driver can possibly be subjected. For example, in some cases pronounced low-pass filtering is comfortable for a driver, but it may turn out to be difficult in the event that driver has to make rapid decisions, maneuvers, and reactions.
A lot of technology is available to enable the driver to improve their organizational skills. It is possible to provide an interface that immerses the driver in a 3-D environment so they van easily identify the operation controls in the car. Investors are also ready to invest many different innovations to make the project succeed.
The market for joystick-controlled cars is available and grossly untapped. The Company, therefore, strives to satisfy regulators that the joystick car being manufactured will be safe for use by customers with physical disabilities that make it difficult for them to drive normal cars. An example of a technology has great potential for investment is the i-drive system. The driver can use an i-drive system to navigate among information functions such as climate control to email and to the gear shifter. The i-drive system segregates the imagery of the systems in a separate screen in the center of the dash.
ProducingJoystick controlled cars is still a growing exercise for the Company.The Five Forces Model as postulated by Michael Porter offers the bestbasis to evaluate the competitiveness of the company and its positionthe joystick car market. It is, therefore, possible to understand thevarious strengths of the industry in order to lay down strategicmeasures that will make the car more acceptable in the motorindustry.
Suppliershave a lot of power in any industry that using new technologies tocome up with a new product. The joystick-controlled car needs a lotof coordination between the company and suppliers. The Companyintends to use a database to improve coordination with suppliers ofvarious car appliances that operate as geographically distributedteams. A company manufacturing joystick-controlled cars has manysimilar features with other motorcar manufacturers, but to on anextreme level. Suppliers and the company are linked together asmega-organizations that to work tightly together. Any new innovationsthat are initiated by the company have to be accessed and approved bysuppliers because they will eventually be conjoined by theirtechnological capabilities. The suppliers have a lot of power to theextent that information technologies cannot essentially alter theimplicit coordination that goes on between the Company and theorganization. This is not to state that communication betweensuppliers and the Company does not depend on communicationtechnologies. The relationship is so much in favor of suppliers thatthe supply environment is highly unpredictable and often maintainedthrough mutual adjustments to resolve any situations that may affectthe inward supply chain. Supplier power is, therefore, a verysignificant aspect in the joystick car industry even as it continuesto grow.
Buyershave a lot of power for joystick-controlled cars. Although the car isdesigned to enable customers with physical disabilities, there is ano-fit-all model that all customers can use. It means that every carhas to be made in such a way as to meet the requirements of thecustomer. The challenge is to make car easily adaptable by a customerwith functional disabilities. Current technology has made it possiblefor people with muscular diseases to use joystick-controlled carswithin different ranges of motion. However, adjustments must be madeto fit other cases such as people with spinal injuries or otherswithout limbs. No all individuals who use the electric wheelchair arefit for a particular joystick controlled car. The customer has a lotof power because the car must be made in such a manner as it fitstheir situation. Whenever technicians and designers converge to makea new car, they have a specific customer in mind rather than rely ongeneral information about customers. The future challenge in makingthe car more adapted to customer needs is to make a car that doesrequire fine motor control or a disabled customer with at least limbsthat can move. Prospective buyers who suffered spinal injuries areoften left out due to this limitation. The common trend is thatengineers have to approach customer orientation in a self-centeredway. The demographic of engineers is very low in relation to customerbaselines. Initially, an engineer had to design for another engineerand the results were often poor and quite confusing the customer. Anexample is the BMW iDrive system that was logically feasible for theuser, but with a complex joystick mouse-like device. The firstgeneration iDrives were used in a 7 series luxury Sedan, but itturned out so difficult to the user for many buyers that many returnsfollowed with massive refunds.
Thecurrent market for joystick-controlled cars is still largelyunexploited because the idea of using a joystick car on the road isstill in its infancy. The competitive environment for companiesmanufacturing joystick cars is still dependent on technologycapabilities for a company. Large car manufacturers such as Toyota orthe General Motors still retain the highest leverage on exploitingthe market niche. Trials are currently underway andjoystick-controlled cars may soon be commercially distributedworldwide. Large companies have an operational advantage that givesthem a competitive advantage because they can invest in the bestpossible technologies. They are also more likely to receivepermission by regulators than a small company is.
Thethreat of substitution
Thereis an insignificant threat for substitution. Even the conventionalcar used by normal people is under consideration for the joystick toreplace the steering wheel. It is technologically possible to controlthe trajectory of a vehicle through drive-by-wire. Many cars havesteer-by-wire systems that use electrical signals to direct the waythe car moves. Mechanical connections to the steering wheel areincreasingly being replaced by a new electrical control system. Thetechnology drift is therefore in favor joystick-controlled carsrather hence, reducing the threat of substitution. Joystick-operatedcars for people with disability are likely to be used into theunforeseeable future. The modern driver is more inclined towardsusing a joystick steering than the one with a mechanical connectionwith other parts of the body. The reason for the low threat ofsubstitution is that a joystick has a tight range of movement thatmakes it easy to manipulate. A small tweak on a joystick steering hasa huge impact on the direction the car takes. The caveat, however, isthat the joystick system for people with functional disabilitiescould be different from that of normal cars. Normal people need arelatively larger geometry of movement because they are likely to usemore energy while controlling the car.
Threatof new entry
Thethreat of new entry is quite low because mainstream car manufacturersstill have a huge influence in determining the path of digitalizingthe automobile industry. The threat of entry lies in the emergence ofnew contractors that have superior digital technologies that wouldenable traditional companies to make better joystick-controlled cars.The Company, however, still has the opportunity to liaise with othercontractors that can offer new innovations. The aggregate threat ofentry by other operators is generally very low.
Evaluationof Customer Segment
Themarket segmentation for joystick-controlled cars is quite extremebecause there does not exist a particular model for all households.Every customer has to make a personal order depending on the specificfunctional disability they have. The range of movement for steeringwill vary from one customer to another. The basis of segmentation is,therefore, every-customer-per-car.
Segment or users
Features to address the identified needs
General usage, support and maintenance, configurations
Specialist hardware alignments, design, and support, special peripherals
Support and collaboration, hardware configurations, special features, controls
Specialist hardware alignments, design, and support, special peripherals
Sincethe product will be greatly innovative and designed to suit a user’sneeds perfectly, the product’s price will be high. The pricing willtake into account the presence of competitors, the cost of producingthe product, and the segment of the clients. Moreover, the strategywill consider incentives or subsidies, features included in thejoystick, and the experience afforded to each user. However, in theintroductory stages, the firm will give discounts and gift cards tocustomers in order to create a market.
Thetechnology will be afforded to all segments: professional, personal,and business. The firm will capture the users or the markets byengaging in numerous effective marketing strategies and efficientcommunication or care experience. However, because of themultipronged nature of the technology, the firm will encounter greatrisks during marketing or in integrating the product in the market.
Thefirm will collaborate with major users and firms in the sector. Mostimportantly, is the desire by the firm to develop partnerships withprofessionals in a bid to integrate the technology within clinicalsettings.
Today,there exists little information on the usage and significance of ajoystick thus, it will be in the interest of the firm to undertakecomprehensive marketing approaches and processes. The company willutilize social media, especially YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter tolaunch the technology and market it to people. Social media hasbecome an imperative aspect in the contemporary business world, whichmeans that for the technology to reach a great number of peoplewithin the shortest period, the firm will have to utilize differentinternet mechanisms.
Thedesign of the product will take place in the firm’s laboratorywhile the real production will occur in China in a bid to reducelabor costs. The company will later open other production facilitiesacross the globe in order to extend its market share.
Lodha,N., Mandai, S., & Charbon, E. (2013). Monolithic integration ofLEDs and silicon photomultipliers in standard CMOS technology forconsumer applications. In Proceedingsof International Image Sensor Workshop, IISW.
Mahajan,H. P., Spaeth, D. M., Dicianno, B. E., Brown, K., & Cooper, R. A.(2014). Preliminary evaluation of a variable compliance joystick forpeople with multiple sclerosis. Journalof rehabilitation research and development, 51(6),951.
Morris,M. L. (2015). Mobilizing possibilities: Dance, disability andtechnology. TheJournal of Humanities in Rehabilitation,1.