How Augmented Reality is Changing the Driving Experience in 2020
August 10, 2020
What if you could view your car’s entire spec profile without looking down at the dash?
Augmented reality is sweeping across the tech sphere in 2020, specifically within the auto industry.
The growth of this innovative technology has made it possible for manufacturers to ensure a safer and smoother ride, every time you get behind the wheel. A quick glance to the dash or side mirror can put any driver (and anyone else on the road) at risk.
Augmented reality technology has the potential to improve safety, efficiency, and overall ease-of-use in vehicles from a variety of car brands. Take a look at some of the ways AR is transforming the auto industry in 2020.
What is Augmented Reality?
To really understand how AR is changing the automotive scene, it’s important to understand what falls under the Augmented Reality umbrella. AR is more than a way to immerse yourself into a video game or piece of media.
Augmented Reality is a technological development that is completely changing the way we interact with the world around us. Essentially, AR superimposes digital information in the form of graphics, images or text over our standard first-person view. This is made possible through wearable tech, such as glasses or goggles, or via projection.
While some wearable tech gives us more access to our digital lives, AR provides the user with full immersion that isn’t accessible from a phone or smartwatch. This way, you’re accessing your digital and organic information simultaneously in real time.
However, unlike Virtual Reality, the purpose of Augmented Reality isn’t to replace the information that’s being processed by the user. Instead of creating a completely separate digital world, AR allows people to merge both worlds.
Augmented Reality Benefits for Drivers
Instead of glancing at their phone or around the car for important information, the driver can have a full view of everything they need without even turning their head. This has the potential to improve safety and innovation across an entire industry.
For example, augmented reality can allow drivers to get better blind-spot visibility by actively showing a video feed of any obstructions in the rearview mirror
In addition, AR and VR are helping buyers make more informed decisions about their auto purchase. Some benefits include:
Improved showroom shopping experience Increased safety systems Stronger performance Simplified maintenance updates and
Not only is AR helping car brands create better products for a lower cost, but it’s making every ride safer for those behind the wheel.
Some basic features that are making cars safer include:
Projected dashboard stats within the driver’s natural line of sight Immersive, safe navigation and clearly visible driving directions Improved focus and visibility Real-time localization Peripheral text and updates out of main view
Defensive driving is even more effective when the driver is able to see warnings for road hazards and collisions ahead of time. By viewing driving updates and directions in their unobstructed line of sight, drivers are able to multitask without even realizing it.
While most states prohibit the use of handsets while driving, even popular hands-free devices can be cumbersome and distracting. This makes the most basic tasks, like using a GPS app, dangerous. Anything that takes a driver’s attention off the road can be the cause of a life-changing (or life-ending) crash.
With standard technology, the driver is required to take their attention off the road to effectively use the device. A handheld GPS or mobile phone can only provide so much information with audio, but heads up displays (HUD) allow drivers to look at directions, maps, or even traffic updates without taking their eyes off the road.
Eliminating extra distractions by giving drivers a full view of everything they need for the drive can save countless lives on the road. AR is becoming an industry standard, and safety is one the primary benefits.
How is AR Affecting the Auto Market?
Augmented Reality has been utilized by a few well-known auto brands for years, but it’s a growing staple in the industry.
Think about how much smoother your next road trip would be if you had as much control as your co-pilot? AR improves the entire experience for both drivers and passengers by allowing everyone to see vital information such as MPH, directions, nearby services, audio settings, and auto performance stats via an integrated HUD visual display.
This trend began in the luxury market, but AR is becoming a standard feature for popular mainstream manufacturers like Mazda, Toyota and MINI. Not only is it being incorporated in the vehicles themselves, but car companies are using AR to improve the entire manufacturing process.
Buyers no longer need to magically envision themselves in the car of their dreams. Now, they can literally “try on” a potential purchase without even leaving the showroom.
How Will Augmented Reality Affect the Self-Driving Industry?
Self-driving cars are another product that technology has brought to the mainstream market, but AR is adding another layer of safety and functionality to this already innovative industry.
Autonomous vehicles use AI, sensors, and other technological developments to safely drive without human intervention. By responding to visual and tactile stimulus, these cars are able to navigate through lanes of traffic in real time.
AR creates the perfect testing environment for these vehicles before they hit the market. Using visual media, testing specialists can create a completely digital virtual environment that mimics actual roads and city infrastructure.
Augmented Reality also creates the perfect environment to test how these vehicles could interact with other cars and traffic elements in real time.
Using digitally superimposed objects, AR testing specialists can test vehicles without always relying on practical props and collision units. They can also create more realistic scenarios without operating on public roads, adding another layer of protection before each model hits the mass market. As more and more models are popping up on the road, this increases each “driver’s” ability to accurately respond to anything that’s thrown their way.
By building a virtual world to test out real-world scenarios, AR is making self-driving cars safer before they’re even released to the public.
Augmented Reality in the Mainstream Auto Market
How is AR transforming cars on nearly every car lot across the country? No matter your budget or lifestyle, Augmented Reality is becoming a standard feature for more manufacturers than ever in 2020.
AR is quickly replacing standard GPS and audio systems in even standard base models, improving in-vehicle navigation AND entertainment for everyone in the car. Projecting the navigation details in clear, unobstructed view takes the stress out of getting from Point A to Point B. Drivers no longer need to rely on their co-pilot to signal every turn in time, and they don’t have to deal with the safety risk of using a handheld system.
It doesn’t matter if you’re driving a compact coup or a luxury full-size vehicle, AR can create a fully immersive experience that will improve every trip – no matter how many miles.
Additionally, AR is making road trips a breeze for families and large groups. Any length of time in the car is much more enjoyable when everyone can enjoy some extra comfort and peace of mind.
In addition to reduced road rage, passengers and drivers can enjoy a wide range of benefits in AR-equipped vehicles that include:
Smarter, more responsive navigation systems Accessible driver support Truly hands-free calling, digital controls, and roadside assistance support Improved driving tactics as a result of improve metric visibility Reduced in-vehicle and external distractions Increased peripheral visibility and depth of range 360-degree view of all driving data and road information
Never worry about missing a speed limit posting or local traffic sign when you can access real-time, location-specific info on your windshield. Or, forget about relying on your passengers to choose your driving music when you can change stations without taking your hands off the wheel.
Development of Augmented Reality Automotive Technology
Innovative companies are continuously developing new ways to enhance the driving experience for all corners of the automotive consumer market.
WayRay is one of the most notable companies that are developing AR tech for consumer drivers. Using an AR Rendering Engine, these products are able to siphon useful data from:
Computer vision and mapping Relative vehicle positioning Virtual object rendering Sensor data acquisition
Other popular AR manufacturers include Gotham and Samsung, but brands are continuously jumping onto this fast-moving train. However, many auto brands are coming up with their own proprietary software to give their inventory an added edge.
Jaguar, Prosche, and Audi are all developing their own AR systems, each boasting uniquely clever ways to entice potential buyers.
However you’re using it, Augmented Reality in mass market vehicles has the potential to improve your ride every time you get behind the wheel. It’s undeniable that we can expect to see this feature on all of our dashboards soon enough.
Augmented Reality is taking over a variety of industries and sectors, from education to entertrainment. The automotive sphere is using this adaptive technology to improve the overall experience for everyone involved, while increasing the safety and profitability of the cars they’re produciting.
If you want to dive into a (mostly) immersive environment whenever you need to get from Point A to Point B, AR is the transformative technology you need to incorporate in your vehicle. Click here to learn more about how Augmented Reality is transforming the driving experience in 2020.