BMW Is Putting Augmented Reality Next To The Steering Wheel
The HoloActive Touch system is a floating display that uses reflections to create the illusion of a hovering screen
Instead of the embedding HUDs and GPS’s on the windshield—an approach many future-forward automakers are taking to enhance the driving experience—BMW has recently revealed that its developing a HoloActive Touch system, a floating augmented reality display right next to the steering wheel. Utilizing reflections to create the illusion of a hovering screen, along with a camera to interpret touches and movement, the gesture-based interface syncs to the company’s Connected Cloud architecture.
The system follows in the footsteps of the German giant’s AirTouch, which made its debut in CES 2016 and is part of an ongoing development to make screens virtually weightless and AR-like. According to BMW’s press release, this will mark the first time in-vehicle navigation, communication and entertainment functions will be operable without having to touch solid materials.
Ultimately the innovation may prove to be one of few that will survive the automated vehicle revolution. While a driverless future is still vague in terms of visual aesthetics, at CES 2017, BMW promised that its HoloActive Touch system will be just one of many “trailblazing and revolutionary technology.”
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