Consumer Electronics Show 2019: preview
The Consumer Electronics Show is the world’s largest technology trade show, held in Las Vegas each January. It was originally designed as an event to publicise the newest commercially-available household gadgets, such as computers and stereo systems, but has expanded over the last decade-or-so to include a broader range of technology.
Car manufacturers are now regular visitors to the Consumer Electronics Show, showcasing advancements in infotainment systems, safety technology, autonomous driving, battery packs and electric powertrains. As the worlds of cars and technology continue to merge, CES has become a fixture on the automotive calendar. The 2019 instalment of CES is all set to start on the 8 January and continue until January 12. Here’s our preview of the key car tech we’re expecting to see ordered by manufacturer.
Audi is planning to unveil its future plans for in-car entertainment, showcasing its latest gesture, touch and voice controlled infotainment system, as well as its plans for a “mobile movie theatre.” Both of these will be displayed on the company’s the new e-tron electric SUV.
Audi envisions a future in which drivers will have more “free” time behind the wheel, thanks to autonomous driving technology. The German company’s “mobile movie theatre” system aims to fill this “free” time by allowing occupants to enjoy film and television programmes via mobile streaming services.
For the time being, the system is only operational when the car is stationary. However, it’s feasible that the technology could be used in future autonomous vehicles when self-driving technology is engaged.
Hyundai MOBIS, parts supplier to the Korean automobile manufacturer Hyundai, is planning a concept interior at CES which introduces several new technologies focussed on driver convenience and autonomous driving.
First up is Hyundai’s latest “Virtual Touch Technology,” an interior infotainment interface that recognises the driver’s gestures instead of touchscreen inputs. This system operates Hyundai’s “Windscreen Display Technology;” a windscreen which is transparent during manual driving mode, but which can be blacked out completely in autonomous driving mode, allowing the occupants to enjoy movies and streaming entertainment on a large display.
Another feature of the concept will be an “Emotional Recognition” system, based on an AI platform which categorises the driver’s emotions and alters the interior lighting to suit their mood. It will also inform other nearby road users if the driver is distracted. Finally, Hyundai will showcase its latest generation of Hydrogen Fuel Cell technology.
Mercedes will unveil three new cars at the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show. First, the German company will debut its new CLA fastback saloon, which will borrow a host of technology and infotainment features, as well as a mild-hybrid powertrain from the newest generation A-Class.
The German automobile manufacturer will also show its Vision URBANETIC concept; an autonomously-driven, all-electric vehicle which hints at Mercedes’s future plans for mobility. Mercedes plans for the model to be adaptable to suit either passenger transportation or cargo delivery.
Renowned Swiss design house, Rinspeed, is aiming to bring autonomy to delivery vehicles and taxis with its driverless SNAP and MicroSNAP concepts. The aim of the concepts is to speed up delivery times in congested city centres, where swarms of MicroSNAPs head out on individual deliveries in place of one big van doing multiple deliveries along a route.
The SNAP concept was unveiled at the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show, of which the MicroSNAP is essentially a shrunken variant. With dimensions no bigger than a Renault Twizy, the concept is built on a “skateboard” chassis, with a choice of two interchangeable “pods,” in either a passenger compartment or cargo compartment configuration.
Rinspeed plans for the “pods” to last as long as conventional car bodies, with the “skateboards” being decommissioned, recycled and replaced once they reach the end of their useful life.
Let us know what you are looking forward to seeing most at CES 2019 in the comments below...