Through safety features, augmented reality gets a grip on automobiles

The technology required to automate and electrify automobiles is maturing at the same time that of augmented reality technology. The possible applications of augmented reality (AR) are being considered by automakers who are eager to grab consumers’ attention and perhaps new sources of income. Given the buzz around augmented reality (AR) generated by the metaverse, you wouldn’t expect the integrations that are now on the market to be as valuable to drivers as they actually are.

The initial augmented reality safety applications that the car industry is seeing can help drivers with navigation and detect potential risks on the road, and those give value now, providing an on-ramp to a future-proof business that anticipates an autonomous future. A few software firms are vying for market share by developing solutions and integrating their technology with OEMs.

Basemark, a Finnish company that specializes in automotive software, declared on Wednesday that certain of the most recent BMW iX cars will now come equipped with its AR over-video application. The following day, Harman, a Samsung subsidiary that specializes in connected car technology and other IoT solutions, announced that it would be purchasing Apostera, a business whose augmented reality (AR) software would help Harman broaden its automotive offerings and provide an augmented reality platform-as-a-product. The integration of Basemark with BMW and Harman’s purchase of Apostera not only point to some of the industry’s rising stars, but also to the potential applications of augmented reality in automobiles.

According to Tero Sarkkinen, CEO and founder of Basemark, drivers of specific BMW i4 automobiles will experience augmented reality straight through their infotainment screen while utilizing BMW’s navigation system. The touchscreen displays interactive arrows over the real-world environment to show the driver when and where to turn or if they should switch lanes. The touchscreen receives live video of the roadway in front of the car through the vehicle’s front-view camera. The movie and map will be displayed on separate screens.

Of course, this technology has other uses as well, such as heads-up displays (HUD), which appear above windshields to prevent drivers from taking their eyes off the road, according to Sarkkinen.

With the Q4 e-Tron from Audi, Apostera already has a HUD solution that is responsive enough to faithfully replicate the real environment of the driver. The driver assistance system status, traffic signs, driving speed, and navigation symbols are all displayed as static displays on the Audis’ AR windshields. Additionally, drivers will be able to see floating symbols from a distance of roughly 30 feet, which will alert them to things like lane departure alerts or highlight a moving vehicle in front while using adaptive cruise control.

In the future, when self-driving cars are the norm, Golubinskiy predicts that AR will enable passengers to interact with their surroundings. For instance, while driving through the Alps, you can come across some stunning churches or lakes. You can interact with the touchscreen on windows to experience a different level of interactivity. With a touchscreen, for example, you can touch a mountain to learn more about its height or other details. The information is actually projected.

Although there aren’t many cars with augmented reality features right now, this is the current trend with other in-car technology: charging subscription fees for smart vehicle services. At CES, Google and Amazon unveiled new in-car technologies that improve automobile infotainment systems and even enable users to stream YouTube videos or Amazon Prime services that will presumably need a subscription fee.

It is simple to understand how AR applications may be utilized to give manufacturers a new path to higher profits in a world where pandemic-related supply chain problems are delaying the production of new vehicles and automakers are investing more in electrification.