A new touchscreen user interface concept has given us a glimpse of how in-car infotainment touchscreens might operate in the future.
Designer Matthaeus Krenn believes current in-car touchscreens are awash with small icons, lacking in fluency and distracting to the driver.
His solution? Kill the buttons, kill the switches, and focus on a touchscreen where up to eight functions can be controlled by varying finger movements, without the driver having to look at the screen.
For example, touch the screen with two fingers only, and you’re telling it you would like to adjust the volume on the audio system.
A simple swipe in a generally upwards or downwards direction with two fingers will alter the volume accordingly.
Three fingers changes the source of the entertainment (AM, FM, CD, etc) while four fingers will adjust the temperature setting for the climate control.
The system adapts depending on how far the user’s fingers are spread, with three fingers close together changing the audio source while three fingers far apart changes the radio frequency.
Krenn has done away with pin-point accuracy, using all of the available touchscreen surface to receive commands; it’s difficult to accidently change the climate control from 18 degrees to 26 degrees, for example.
As carmakers integrate more of the ‘smartphone-feel’ into their cars, Krenn believes his concept can finally replace something that was simple to use - like a dial to change the radio frequency - with a touchscreen that can be used without the driver taking their eyes off the road.
Here at TMR, we can only see two problems with the system so far; firstly, its limited appeal to those who have lost one or more fingers (or the control of those fingers) and secondly, he hasn’t given the system a name yet...
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