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  • CES: Day 2 (day 1 for me)

    If theres a better place for this feel free to move it...
    Part 1:
    So I started off the day with a panel discussion on the "Connected Car" with representatives from SEMA, AutoNet, ATX, DENSO and Kia. I missed the beginning of the panel discussion but what I saw was rather embarrassing. They identified the future as internet connected vehicles either via tethering (using their own apps) or built in 3G connections. Kia really pushed their UVO system (more on that later) as a competitor to Fords sync which are both built on the same Microsoft platform. SEMA also pushed a grid connected car which they expected to arrive by 2018 (though with no plans to make it happen-just the idea that it was the future). Their big technology which was also featured heavily by a few manufacturers (including the SEMA showcar [media]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jvRcPVZhDT4[/url]) was FLIR ([url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ndNjiQ2araQ[/media]) which is expected in a few aftermarket systems later this year.

    What was missing, and was made very clear by a few people in the audience asking questions, was any innovation whatsoever. Voice recognition and other safety-improving, eyes off the screen technology was nowhere on their to do list. The trend seemed to be add an internet connection and see what happens. The kia UVO system for example will allow third party widgets to be added.

    The trend continued to PNDs....Garmin updated its maps and added an internet connection ($5/month) to deliver flight info, gas prices and google local search but again nothing innovative. Still no A2DP or AVRCP bluetooth capability or any type of infotainment functionality.

    Magellan which probably has the worst looking nav I saw at the show added PBAP support to some of its maestro series and updated the maps-that was it....its almost like the company stopped trying.
    [media]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rILu9tYUytg[/media]

    Pioneer surprisingly had one of the better PNDs of the bunch. Build in A2DP, AVRCP, a smooth routing engine and support for music and movie playback from sd cards, an iphone or even Pandora radio (with an iphone app).

    For the first time I would have to say in-vehicle technology is doing the real innovation. Ford Sync continued to impress: http://www.latimes.com/business/la-f...,4905917.story while the UVO was in my opinion basic at best ([media]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kid-EPiVmyk[/media])

    I expected to see the end to the carPC here but instead I saw a scattered batch of decent technology but certainly nothing that jumped out as this years "must have product".

    A few other cool technologies really picked up from what I saw last year. On-the-move TV will be the big in-car technology of 2010 with 4 different companies I saw today alone offering DTV receivers (aka mobile-ATSC).
    [media]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p9EP2TmJhgk[/media]

    There was also some great innovation from the competing cell-phone based technologies offering an impressive 60 channels.
    [media]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A9wztSiTvNw[/media]

    And of course FLIR mentioned above.
    [media]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ndNjiQ2araQ[/media]

    More to come in the next few days and sorry in advance for the grammar, its being done on an android phone for now.

    Part 2
    A few of those other cool technologies deserve some mentioning...
    Theres a company called BI Automotive (http://www.bi-automotive.de/) that is working on getting US distributors for its two products. The first one are battery powered laser engraved led sill-plates that were a very reasonable $100 per pair with an estimated battery life of 6-8 years. The second one and of far more use to carPC enthusiasts is a universal connector. It has 12 pins which can be used for CAN-Bus, antenna, power, usb, audio or just about anything and the other half of the universal connector is a dock for just about any device-PND, phone, etc. I had some really cool ideas for futures uses but more on this later.

    The other one was a company called Nav-TV (http://www.navtv.com/) which had a full line of in-dash screens and FLIR cameras ready to go. They even have a dash console replacement complete with gauges and a custom screen for GM-LAN equipped vehicles.

    Last but not least I talked with the guys from Lilliput (http://www.lilliput.cn/) about whats in the near future for them and have two exciting announcements. The first is that they just released a usb powered monitor. This is huge news as it now allows touchscreen control and power to be supplied by the PC making things just that much easier to get setup. The second is that we should be seeing multi-touch monitors from them in the next 6-9 months.
    openMobile - An open source C# Front End (why choose openMobile?)
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  • #2
    Well that's good info, and I would agree I am fairly disappointed. Perhaps they are saving the good stuff until the end?
    Fusion Brain Version 6 Released!
    1.9in x 2.9in -- 47mm x 73mm
    30 Digital Outputs -- Directly drive a relay
    15 Analogue Inputs -- Read sensors like temperature, light, distance, acceleration, and more
    Buy now in the MP3Car.com Store

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    • #3
      I can only hope...... just updated with some more info -> i'll try and fill in some better videos tomorrow.
      openMobile - An open source C# Front End (why choose openMobile?)
      - Always Recruiting Developers -
      Like what you see? Donations are always welcome

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      • #4
        Keep in mind that the availability of over the air mobile digital TV depends on local stations adding the necessary equipment and signals to their digital transmissions. You could easily have a chicken and egg scenario: The broadcasters are waiting for a large enough market to exist before investing in the necessary technology, and the market is waiting for enough content to make the purchase compelling. It's also very unlikely you'll see any kind of government mandate, which is the only reason digital TV exists today at all.

        Actually though, it's pretty amazing how fast this technology is making it to market, so who knows? Maybe there's enough demand to get this rolling. Certainly in the major markets I would expect.

        Not that I'm a shill for them or anything, but get over to the Visteon booth tomorrow outside in the central plaza next to Sprint and Best Buy. They have some pretty neat hardware on display with integrated guage/video and all video clusters, all in one setups and force-feedback touchscreen displays...which I could see having a use in the car.

        VegasGuy

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        • #5
          Originally posted by VegasGuy View Post
          Keep in mind that the availability of over the air mobile digital TV depends on local stations adding the necessary equipment and signals to their digital transmissions. You could easily have a chicken and egg scenario: The broadcasters are waiting for a large enough market to exist before investing in the necessary technology, and the market is waiting for enough content to make the purchase compelling. It's also very unlikely you'll see any kind of government mandate, which is the only reason digital TV exists today at all.

          Actually though, it's pretty amazing how fast this technology is making it to market, so who knows? Maybe there's enough demand to get this rolling. Certainly in the major markets I would expect.
          Well yea thats a great point for the DTV stuff and I think market adoption has been slower then they expected. The cell tower based stuff on the other hand has really taken off with 60 channels and growing available everywhere theres cell service.

          Originally posted by VegasGuy View Post
          Not that I'm a shill for them or anything, but get over to the Visteon booth tomorrow outside in the central plaza next to Sprint and Best Buy. They have some pretty neat hardware on display with integrated guage/video and all video clusters, all in one setups and force-feedback touchscreen displays...which I could see having a use in the car.
          VegasGuy
          Yea yea lol.....don't worry its certainly on the list. I covered the North hall and South 2,3 & 4 today. I'll hopefully cover the rest tomorrow. Anyone other then Visteon I missed?
          openMobile - An open source C# Front End (why choose openMobile?)
          - Always Recruiting Developers -
          Like what you see? Donations are always welcome

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          • #6
            Thanks for posting!

            And I agree I would like to see AVRCP sooner rather than later.

            Anything about opening CAN BUS data for developers (specially electronic/media related stuff?) We should ask for some APIs/message/translations for the ECU/CAN networks that controls audio, HVAC, lights, windows, etc...some day...if we don't ask, they won't even think about it...
            Worklogs: 08 Sequoia Platinum Carputer (In Progress!)
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            07 Infiniti Fx35 (done!) & 06 Infiniti M35 (gone...)

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            • #7
              I pounded the alleys over in the China and Korea sections some today, but there could easily be some cool stuff at the component level still lurking about. It's just hard to get past all those cool 3d HD TVs.

              I think I pretty much have to agree with your overall assessment. Lots of technology moving into the car, but not a lot of innovation coming with it. I've lived with 4g in the car for 6 months now, and I can say for a fact, that it's very nice to have, but it is NOT the solution for all your infotainment needs. How long has cellular service been around? 30 years? So why are there still numerous places in Las Vegas where you get little or no cellular signal? Now take that and replace cellular with 4g. Yes, I can stream audio and video to my car, and when the signal is good, it looks and sounds great. but move into a fringe area, and suddenly things don't work so good. Out on the highway? Fuggeddaboutit. And I'm not optimistic either. Like I said, we're 30 years into cellular and they still haven't got it so it works all the time everywhere.

              Anyway, have a great day!

              VegasGuy

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              • #8
                I spent about 20 minutes just standing in front of those no glasses required 3D screens over the information kioks and another 30 just staring at the 9mm LG flatscreen so I know exactly what you mean.
                openMobile - An open source C# Front End (why choose openMobile?)
                - Always Recruiting Developers -
                Like what you see? Donations are always welcome

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                • #9
                  great info, keep it coming!
                  My OLD 2001 Mitsubishi Eclipse GT:
                  "The Project That Never Ended, until it did"


                  next project? subaru brz
                  carpc undecided

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                  • #10
                    I've been consistently disappointed with innovation of technology in the car precisely because it is usually about building a proprietary in car service on either a subscription model or a device basis or worse, both.

                    This focus on the device is foolish. The future is in customizable user experiences. The problem is that innovation takes place when users can....well, innovate. Not work within the proprietary confines of a manufacturer's network or company's device.

                    The auto folks need to be real careful or they are going to lose the race to someone whose business model is not built around stuff in the car but rather a mobile experience that continues whether one is in the car or out. Of course, there is plenty of evidence that shows incumbents are almost universally toppled by disruptive technologies while they are quite good at evolutionary ones. That's probably why all you are seeing is extensions of stuff you've already seen.
                    Originally posted by ghettocruzer
                    I was gung ho on building a PC [until] just recently. However, between my new phone having internet and GPS and all...and this kit...Im starting to have trouble justfiying it haha.
                    Want to:
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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Bugbyte View Post
                      I've been consistently disappointed with innovation of technology in the car precisely because it is usually about building a proprietary in car service on either a subscription model or a device basis or worse, both.

                      This focus on the device is foolish. The future is in customizable user experiences. The problem is that innovation takes place when users can....well, innovate. Not work within the proprietary confines of a manufacturer's network or company's device.
                      [sarcasm] but wouldn't it be abosutely horrific to have a chevy and a ford in your garage, and be able to setup the OEM radio screen interface on both the same? [/sarcasm]

                      thats is just it-- no company wants to work together, they all want to come up with their own solution for things, and it just ends up screwing the consumer...

                      imo, companies(both OE's and aftermarket) are making leaps and bounds, but it seems that each company is leaping and bounding in different directions, making every companies tech drastically different, and even harder for consumers to pickup and use... it used to be that you never even needed a manual to change the settings on OE, or aftermarket devices, everything was mostly where it would reasonably be placed, either in the gui, or in the physical buttons. Now, you almost need the manual just to turn the device on...

                      but, it comes down to what should be standard-- who should set that standard, who is going to follow it, and who is going to take the time to make sure that the standard won't limit new technology?

                      sorry, /rant
                      My OLD 2001 Mitsubishi Eclipse GT:
                      "The Project That Never Ended, until it did"


                      next project? subaru brz
                      carpc undecided

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                      • #12
                        I am feeling some "We are the world" chant coming...

                        I think it will happen to where it is standardized. I envision nav/gps systems being standard. So much so that it is as much an additional feature as seatbelts are. Hardware wise they will probably all use ARM/snapdragon/x86 processors which linux can run off of. People like us will move into software modding mostly and get it exactly as we want, some will take notice and eventually there will be a firmware update that will replace whatever OEM software with some hacked linux version that works much better.

                        Sort of like how people that dont realize the optical drive isnt a cupholder can burn a DVD, put it in there Lexus/Toyota and change the nav software with a key combo.

                        Mainstream I dont think it is going to happen, and I think above is the best we are going to see for a long time.
                        Fusion Brain Version 6 Released!
                        1.9in x 2.9in -- 47mm x 73mm
                        30 Digital Outputs -- Directly drive a relay
                        15 Analogue Inputs -- Read sensors like temperature, light, distance, acceleration, and more
                        Buy now in the MP3Car.com Store

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          any hints from lilliput about hdmi/dvi touchscreens?
                          Former author of LinuxICE, nghost, nobdy.
                          Current author of Automotive Message Broker (AMB).
                          Works on Tizen IVI. Does not represent anyone or anything but himself.

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                          • #14
                            Oh we of such little faith....

                            ...for today I saw innovation I can believe in!

                            I think we can all agree that the biggest problem facing car owners today in America is the way their car sounds. In the case of electric cars, there is none. In the case of most Fords, they just sound like crap.

                            But those clever guys at Visteon have met the challenge head on with the 7.1 Dynamic sound system. This is connected to the CAN bus and has up to 4 microphones which capture and analyze the ambient noise and engine noise in the car interior. Using sophisticated algorithms, a mixture of white noise cancellation and synthesized engine sounds are introduced into the sound system to make it sound like anything you want.

                            You want your Focus to sound like a Ferrari (on the inside)....no problem. Your new Chevy Volt a tad too quiet? Now it sounds like a Ford Powerstroke diesel.

                            Genius I say...simply genius.

                            VegasGuy - back in a moment with a serious post...

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                            • #15
                              On a more serious and positive note, the folks at Visteon demoed a number of aftermarket head units, infotainment units (read carPC) and instrument clusters all with at least some direct access to the CAN/OBD bus. Yes, that means fully integrated instrumentation, mileage, HVAC and all the usual media and nav control.

                              There were a couple of systems running Linux from WinRiver (an Intel company), a couple running XP and my own personal favorite, Centrafuse 3.0 running on WinCE in dual screen mode.

                              All of this is targeted at OEMs, so what the final product might look like is pretty up in the air. But I heard at least one Visteon spokesman describe the abilty of user to re-skin or modifiy layouts as a core feature. Who knows?

                              VegasGuy

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