Global trends in automotive navigation

Some global trends in the field of car infotainment and navigation systems are discussed here
 As smartphone and personal technologies are improving rapidly, navigation plays a more significant role in our life, and it is now a basic feature of our devices. If we got used to this experience in our phones, we can have the same expectation in our car as well. However, the automotive sector shows slightly different patterns regarding the development of the infotainment system and so navigation. The direction of providing additional features that would make the navigation experience more than just showing where we are on the map becomes more essential in our cars when we come to social features, driver assistance, connected services. Navigation now is much more than showing us the directions from one point to another. It provides information of who is doing what and where, and indicating a more complex process that is also able to interact with the driver, integrating its personal life with the car’s infotainment system, while the car also communicates with the environment. In this complex driving environment, we can discover some global trends what aims to provide solutions of how future drivers can cope with this many stimuli that reach the drivers.
Global trends, local implementations If we are talking about trends, we usually think about how these will shape the future, how automotive infotainment systems and navigation will look like for example in 2020. The answer for this question is partially surprising; it will be very similar of what we can experience nowadays, however we can see that these technologies are going to be more wide spread, and more sophisticated. Regarding the following trends it would be hard to distinguish global and local trends. In many cases the trends are global indicators, and how different countries and regions implement these trends are slightly different, but the direction is usually the same.
The trends show that the smartphones continue to be at the centre of our life. Solutions like NavFusion which aims to create seamless smartphone integration with the car’s infotainment systems will be more important, and OEM’s also needs to focus more of how to find the right place in the car for the driver’s connected devices, as the time spent in automobiles is continuously increasing. This brings along the question of personalisation as well within the car, just as we personalise our personal devices.
Another trend that we can observe is that in the future the number of cars with internet connection will increase, meaning cars with direct connection, and more as partially connected through the smart devices brought in to the car. This trend also indicates that cloud based analytics, prognostics, big data becomes more real in the future. OEM’s, car brands will be able to know better their drivers, and to provide additional services and features according to the drivers’ behaviour.
As infotainment systems are improving, and the internet will have a more significant role in our cars as well, we should also think about the other side, of how the car’s systems will be smarter, by communicating with the environment, monitoring better the car’s performance during driving, having deeper integration with location based services, advanced driver assistant systems, navigation, and many more. This will lead us to make the interaction more enjoyable and less distractive for the drivers.
Following this trend we can expect that the car of the future will have a more user friendly, cleaner interface to communicate with. The display focus will shift more from the centre stack to cluster and head-up displays, where the centre stack can be the interactive, but secondary screen. As the number of screens is increasing, the focus should be placed on reducing driver distraction. This can involve technologies, like multimodal data entry and interaction, including voice, touch and remote controls that can be changed according to the driving situation and behaviour.
Navigation for allIn many cases when we are talking about cars and navigation systems that are designed according to the latest trends, we tend to believe that this is the privilege only of the high-end cars. However as better hardware are more accessible even in the aftermarket segment, navigation becomes soon a basic feature of the infotainment system, and not only in the high-end, but also in the low-cost car models. NNG provides solutions for both end of the spectrum implementing the latest trends and making it available on the Indian market.
Visualisation and decreased driver distractionThe focus of the implementation of the aforementioned trends can be different from regions to regions. One of the directions of NNG’s researches is a new visualisation engine that can provide a more realistic visualisation of the environment. This solution will primary focus on the Indian market, as this solution will bring together the natural guidance with efficient use of reference points in the navigation. The enhanced 3D visualisation will provide a more realistic and detailed navigation experience that can support better the drivers.
When we define the trends for the future in the navigation experience, one of the key factors is to reduce driver distraction. This topic becomes more and more important, as the “digital noise” in the car is getting higher. The cars are getting connected with more sensors, screens, but we shouldn’t forget, that the keyword is safety in the first place. As the global leader of navigation solutions, NNG aims to focus on this area as well, and working on navigation solutions that are implementing the latest trends, while keeping the driving experience safe, enjoyable, and less distractive.
Authored by-
Peter Bolesza, Vice President, Emerging Markets, NNG

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