Essential navigation goal
Every person driving a vehicle keeps facing the same challenge — "how to get from point A to point B following the shortest route, safely and without any derailment".
We have various navigation solutions on the market, from in-car GPS navigation systems to smartphones, but there is a fundamental problem – the driver has to look at the map on the screen and then gaze around to compare two pictures in order to make his driving decision.
Distraction leads to incorrect maneuvers, missed exits, headache and, at worst, accidents. The other side of the coin
Distraction is one of the main causes of driving accidents. Phones and other devices are the main sources of it, as they demand the driver to avert the attention from the road. In a recent study, alone in the UK, there are 150,000 GPS-related accidents per annum and increasing. On the other hand, if you don't use the navigation system, a missed maneuver can cost 30-40 additional minutes to get back on the route and be late to an important appointment.
The obvious solution is a system that seamlessly visualizes all critical information without any distraction right in front of the driver's eyes right on the virtual distance from the car. Solution
The Mixed Reality. This technology was recently introduced in the all-electric Audi Q4 e-tron and Audi Q4 e-tron: Sportback
The major challenge of Mixed Reality in today's Automotive industry, is to create a perfect junction of the augmented image with the physical environment (vehicles, lane markings, buildings, etc.). This implies showing the driver an augmented object precisely blended into the real world in real-time. Any mismatch with the surroundings would negatively impact the navigation experience and make the driver dizzy and leads to a serious safety threat.
Further challenges are the quality of underlying data. The augmentation is based on the input received from various in-vehicle systems and sensors, but the available data are primarily targeting the needs of the classical navigation systems and do not provide the accuracy needed for the precise real-time AR.
Apostera addresses these challenges with sophisticated data fusion, object tracking, and predictive environment reconstruction algorithms. Adding highly optimized rendering routines, immense knowledge in embedded systems, and vast experience of automotive production processes resulted in the innovative AR-Creator Software module, developed by Apostera in joining with Audi AG and used in Audi Q4 e-tron and Audi Q4 e-tron: Sportback.Drivers Benefits
From now on, the driver can steer the car without any distracting need to check the route on the display of his car or smartphone - all navigation hints are visualized directly through the windscreen in front of the driver. No more abrupt lane changing, confusion at complex crossings, or distraction from the road!
The driver no longer needs to compare the real world with the digital one displayed on a screen. The virtual assistant drone will accurately prepare the driver for the maneuver and ensure that the guidance is clear and unambiguous. Even in a roundabout, you are spared of counting the exits, as the augmented drone will show you exactly the correct one early enough to make the turn.
That's the beginning of the new era of Automotive Augmented Reality technology that is the foundation that addresses safety and fundamentally changes navigation, entertainment, and semi- Autonomous Driving experiences.