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New Car Technologies: In-Vehicle Infotainment and Connectivity

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connected car

Photo from Pixabay is licensed under CC0

The appearance and spread of connected cars have significantly changed the vehicle market. Automobile manufacturers show an increasing focus on developing the car’s ability to connect with the outside world and enhance the drivers’ comfort and safety. As a result, today’s car has the computing power of 20 personal computers, features about 100 million lines of programming code, and processes up to 25 gigabytes of data an hour. [1]

In-vehicle infotainment, a combination of in-vehicle information and entertainment systems, plays a considerable role in car connectivity. Used either alone or with mobile devices, the infotainment systems in cars provide users with the access to information, safety features and entertainment options for a more seamless interaction with the outside world.

Connected-car technology is now split between approaches that put the internet connection in the car and those relying on a secondary device. Embedded connections don’t require a phone’s data plan to operate, and consumers and car makers gain access to a wider variety of features and data. Moreover, embedded solutions allow auto companies to collect data on cars’ performance and send updates and patches to cars remotely, avoiding recalls related to the car’s software. [2]

Out of many embedded infotainment systems, Uconnect is considered to be one of the most advanced. Uconnect offers a few unique features that other infotainment systems don’t have. One of them is the navigation system, which doesn’t only show a computerized image of the road you’re traveling on, but also shows an actual photo of the intersection, when you get to a highway ramp or a change in directions. That makes directions especially easy and leaves absolutely no doubt about where you’re supposed to go. [3]

At PSA, we also worked on various projects involving automotive infotainment systems. Key areas of development have included enhancements to PJWorks to enable a more full-featured infotainment user interface and graphics rendering, and the integration of a vector font engine for use on the SH4 platform running VxWorks. The program enables vector fonts with rotation, anti-aliasing and alpha blending capabilities which provides the end customer with the desired performance for rendering navigation information on the screen.

More information on in-vehicle infotainment solutions, their types and examples of existing systems, with the focus on embedded technologies can be found in the PSA’s white-paper “Why Choose Qt Framework for In-Vehicle Infotainment?”

PSA excels in providing embedded software solutions and offers sharing its expertise with you. If you’re interested in getting a free consultation with one of our engineering consultants, fill in the form to schedule it at the most convenient time for you.

Sources:

1. http://www.mckinsey.com/insights/manufacturing/whats_driving_the_connected_car

2. http://www.businessinsider.com/connected-car-forecasts-top-manufacturers-2015-2

3. http://www.autotrader.com/research/article/car-tips/227030/why-we-like-chryslers-uconnect-infotainment-system.jsp

PSA Marketing Team

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