Panasonic has also unveiled a wild sound system which leverages the object-oriented spatial audio technology, Dolby Atmos, to the in-car experience.
Panasonic Automotive has kicked off the first virtual CES all guns blazing. The automotive division of the Japanese giant has shown off five technologies that will define the future of the in-car experience. These technologies include Wi-Fi towing cameras, Dolby Atmos surround sound system and augmented reality HUDs. Panasonic has unveiled the world’s first fully wireless wit-fi camera which has a resolution of 1080p at 60 frames per second and connects via the vehicle’s wi-fi network directly via the infotainment system panel. It has been designed to stick onto the trailer that is being used to tow to provide an unobstructed view of the traffic around the vehicle.
“Towing anything when your vehicle’s backup camera is blocked by the trailer can be a dangerous challenge for recreational enthusiasts and equipment hauling businesses,” noted Andrew Poliak, Chief Technology Officer for Panasonic Automotive in a press statement.
The infotainment systems are going to be integrated with Google’s technology using the Android Automative operating system that is also there in the Polestar 2 and the Volvo XC40 recharge. Poliak, in fact, told Engadget that Google has been using Panasonic’s technology in the reference design hardware for the Android Automotive platform.
Adding to the infotainment system, Panasonic has also unveiled a wild sound system which leverages the object-oriented spatial audio technology, Dolby Atmos, to the in-car experience. It is a fruit that’s born out of a partnership between legendary audiophile brand Klipsch, Dolby and Panasonic Automotive.
Panasonic is also adding a 4K augmented reality HUD. “Panasonic’s AR HUD solutions cover more of the roadway, with traditional cluster content like speed and fuel in the near field as well as 3D overlays in the far-field, showing navigation and other critical driver data mapping spatially to the road ahead,” Scott Kirchner, president Panasonic Automotive and executive director, Panasonic Smart Mobility said in a press statement. “And in a future with more self-driving vehicles, our AR HUD could provide an important added level of comfort and assurance for AV passengers as well,” he added.
Panasonic is also adding more computational muscle to the in-car experience. For example, in the case of natural language processing, it is now augmenting the processing with AI which smartly is able to leverage the in-car computer for the same just the way Google does it on its Pixel phones.
Panasonic has announced a collaboration with spatial AI developer Phair which intends to extend driver safety and navigation support. The deep learning technology runs on the infotainment system and detects and analyses the driver’s surroundings in real-time and combines with 3D localisations of the vehicle in-turn providing augmented guidance and safety information.
Last but least was something on charging considering Panasonic is a pioneer in battery technology. It showed off two types of new in-vehicle wireless charging systems – one with a moving coil, another with a static coil. The moving coil system is something that has been teased by other companies as well which moves the coil magnetically closer to the device for an optimal charging position. The most interesting thing is that these charging systems deploy a wattage of 15W, which is the same as the MagSafe system that Apple unveiled with the iPhone 12. It is still not the wireless fastest charging protocol but represents a 2x improvement over the systems found in current vehicles.