Technology in the automotive industry


Take any futuristic movies, pause on a scene where you can see a car and then think about it our cars today… Technologies in cars will become central and there is no doubt about it. But why car’s industry is left behind and don’t keep up integrating new technologies ? Sure we added features to improve the driving comfort but if you look at GPS, phones, etc are integrated in cars since a long time and things are not really evolving… Their is definitely a market for that and we have already technologies and knowledge to do so. Here is the result of a quick brain storming:

Screens: The dash board and a dedicated central console could be screens which means that they can display almost all kind of information or graphics (2D/3D).

Smartphone integration: A special spot can be designed to put your phone. This spot could be equipped with a NFC chip that will automatically request your phone to start bluetooth and connect it to the car (no user interaction required at all). The car will use your smartphone’s data plan to reach Internet (no dedicated connection required for the car, no extra cost). Voice recognition will allow the user to interact with the car and more important with the phone without touching a single button and keeping eyes on the road. Ex: text received during a drive will be first enounced (“You received a text from John”) and then the user can ask to read it (“read it” or “read john’s text” or “what is the content ?”). That’s not revolutionary but not always available in cars

Internet: You car will automatically create a wifi hotspot as soon as a smartphone with a data plan is connected to the car. All devices like kids’ tablet or wifi portable consoles will be able to use Internet. The car can also connect itself to a wifi hotspot when parked, to be more precise after powering off the engine you central screen will display for a few seconds a screen asking “Do you want to connect to wifi blaba” (Only a “connect” button is displayed). Which means that from your parking slot your car can be connected to Internet through your domestic wifi hotspot.

Multimedia: Streaming, cloud and downloading will be a new world open to your car thankfully to your smartphone data plan or wifi. Your smartphone will be an extension of your car and some features will be available only from your smartphone (like queuing a movie to download for your next trip). Why using the smartphone as a complement and why having features only accessible from the smartphone ? Because that kind of features doesn’t make sense for the driver, but it’s interesting for the passenger. So, the idea is to mask then as much as possible for the driver and put then in the passenger pocket. We can imagine a smartphone app to stream, download music to the car, cache streamed movies… And all those heavy data transfer can happen when you car is parked at home and can connect to your home wifi hotspot or a free hotspot like McDonalds, Starbucks, etc… Enhanced GPS: GPS bring us from a point A to B. But when you are traveling you probably miss interesting spots or landscapes. A trip feature can for instance display famous landscapes or touristic attractions in your way or not too far. They will be displayed as a full screen image with a few information (trip delay, price, description) and only displayed when no new GPS instructions are coming in a few seconds/minutes. A gas app will help you to find the cheapeast gas station but will help you also to know the cost of a trip (as we have the gas price and gas consumption we can know a real cost of a trip). For instance after reaching your final destination, you car can give you consumption information (like, your gas cost for the trip from A to B is $xx (x gallons).)

Hardware: The car will feature wifi, bluetooth, nfc, gps, at least 2 screens (dashboard and a central console), sensors (like in smartphones) and conventional car sensors (tire pressure, etc…). Each time you park your car the GPS position is keep in the system (so, next time you jump in the car you are ready to go without waiting on the car GPS to discover your current position). Integrating more sensor will help to improve car experience. For instance, today car increases the autoradio volume accordingly to your current speed, but this make no sense when you are off-road because car vibrations will likely create more noise than wind due to speeding (volume increase is the result of a combination of car vibrations and current speed).

App store, open API: You will be able to install new apps but they will probably need to be pre-approved by the constructor as technologies in cars are very sensitives. To be able to create apps, a SDK/API will be available. This SDK/API will offer information like current fuel tank level, current gas price, speed, car sensors, etc…** **

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