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Panasonic wants to change the way drivers see roads

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reveal Panasonic’s automotive division during CES 2021 on five future technologies that will help make future autonomous vehicles more capable and comfortable.

This includes wireless cloud cameras, Dolby Atmos surround sound system and an augmented reality HUD screen.

The company unveiled its first wireless camera that captures 1080p video at 60 frames per second and connects via the vehicle’s wireless network directly to the infotainment system screen, and is designed to stick to the trailer it pulls to provide an unobstructed view of traffic conditions around the vehicle.

Pulling anything when your car’s backup camera is blocked by the trailer can be a serious challenge to entertainment hobbyists and equipment haulers.

And when it comes to infotainment systems, Panasonic is working closely with Google to develop the custom Android Automotive operating system featured in the Polestar 2 and Volvo XC40 Recharge.

The company showcased the immersive audio system, which originated from a partnership between Panasonic Automotive, Klipsch and Dolby Atmos Music, and is the Dolby Atmos audio system for your car.

Panasonic’s augmented reality HUD covers a large portion of the road, with traditional package content such as: near-field speed and fuel, as well as far-field 3D overlays, showing navigation and other spatially important driver data maps of the road ahead.

In the demo video, the Panasonic system placed blue navigation lines indicating the direction the driver should take on the actual road.

The yellow symbol indicates a cyclist is on the side of the road, and flashing signals warn that cars are approaching too close.

Regular HUD screens display information, such as speed and navigation instructions, via the windshield or the transparent plastic screen so the driver does not have to look at the gauges or the screen in the car.

Numbers and symbols usually appear as if they float somewhere directly over the hood of a car, and some companies have discovered how to make them sit on top of real objects – including other cars and pedestrians – in the real world, creating a kind of an augmented reality experience for the driver.

Panasonic’s augmented reality HUD uses eye tracking technology to closely follow the driver’s eyes, and the vibration control system helps compensate for other shocks and vibrations, and maintains image stability in the windshield from the driver’s point of view.

The imaging radar scans the road ahead across at least three traffic lanes and if the driver is using the navigation system, the HUD will display a line on the road to indicate the correct lane.

The system can also distinguish faded, hard-to-see lane lines, and if the vehicle comes too close to the vehicle ahead, a warning symbol may flash in the back of the other vehicle to warn the driver to free up more space.

Panasonic is making its system available to many vehicle manufacturers so that they can present it as an option in their vehicles.

The company also announced two variants of in-car wireless charging systems – moving coil and fixed coil – at CES 2021, so that the two could offer capable charging. 15 watts, roughly equivalent to what conventional chargers can provide, and both types use the Qi 1.3 charging standard.

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