This 3D holographic technology that will replace touch screens in cars
Because of their potential to cause distractions, touch screens in cars are the subject of controversy. In response, the University of Cambridge is developing an alternative based on innovative technology based on 3D holograms.
In recent years, touch screens have become one of the automakers’ favourite technologies. However, despite their usefulness on board a car, their use can raise concerns in terms of safety since, to a greater or lesser extent, they can distract the driver’s attention from the road.
Now, with the help of the University of Cambridge, a more comfortable and safer alternative could be on the way. It is a system based on 3D holographic technology that would allow drivers to keep their attention on the road while fully controlling the vehicle’s functions.
This solution could end the use of touch screens in cars for a long time.
The elimination of most of the keypads is something inherent to R&D in the automotive sector. However, this evolution has also ended up posing problems related to distractions while driving. Touch screens could be more intuitive, requiring users to look away from the road for extended periods. Using projections based on 3D holograms could be the key to improving the user experience when consulting the different infotainment functions available in current cars.
The Department of Engineering at the University of Cambridge, led by researcher Skirnewskaja, has published a study demonstrating the effectiveness of using 3D holograms while driving. That research had the analysis and way of working with autonomous driving systems as its starting point. It is a kind of improved head-up display to enjoy all the comforts and tools on the screen.
It is a service that would reduce distractions while driving, an aspect that continues to cause thousands of deaths around the world every year. Thanks to the arrangement of information on the windshield, it would be possible to select commands to regulate, among others, the air conditioning system or the choice of music. In this way, it would not be necessary for the touch screens located on the centre console.
That technology would barely have a commercial run for a few years since current driving assistants will give way to fully autonomous driving programs in just a few years. The user will not be required to pay attention to what is happening a few hundred meters ahead as a switchboard manages the information.
The University of Cambridge is cooperating with Google to develop an intuitive system capable of avoiding the user having to manage car functions again through a touch screen. The tests have already begun, so essential advances are expected over the coming months. That is a service that will contribute to a reduction in distractions while driving and will translate into improved safety.