At next week’s Consumer Electronic Show in Las Vegas, Nissan will unveil its future vision for a vehicle that helps drivers “see the invisible” by merging both real and virtual worlds, creating the ultimate connected-car experience.
Get those images of Harry Potter’s invisibility cloak out of your mind, sadly. This tech is neat but it won’t allow drivers to sneak undetected past a stern headmaster.
Invisible-to-Visible, or I2V, is a future technology created through Nissan Intelligent Mobility. That arm of the company envisions new ways of how cars are powered, driven, and integrated into society. I2V will demonstrate the future of driving to CES visitors through an interactive 3D experience at Nissan’s display booth.
I2V will support drivers by merging information from sensors outside and inside the vehicle with data from the cloud. This enables the system not only to track the vehicle’s immediate surroundings but also to anticipate what’s ahead, potentially even showing what’s behind a building or around the corner. The tech maps a 360-degree virtual space around the car to provide information about things like road and intersection status, signage, or nearby pedestrians.
Nissan makes copious mention of a ‘Metaverse Virtual World’, marking very possibly the first time any traditional automaker has issued a press release containing the word ‘metaverse’. This refers to a blockchain project that provides a foundational infrastructure for social and enterprise needs. In this case, the metaverse information will be used to connect the car’s occupants with other people in real time.
Using sensors and projectors inside the car, I2V makes it possible for family, friends or others to appear inside the car as three-dimensional, augmented-reality avatars to provide company or assistance. It could do the same if you want help from a local guide or professional driver who would appear as a projected avatar or as a virtual chase car in the driver’s field of vision
Okay, then. Hopefully there will be a ‘mute’ button for this feature as your author can readily think of several people he most definitely would not want as virtual avatars inside my car.
More practically, Nissan says their I2V can display information about congestion and estimated travel time, or communicate unique details to better inform the driver about the road ahead. This is a concept we can get behind, as it would remove unknowns and ease driving stress, particularly when venturing into a new area.
Visitors to CES can experience I2V at Nissan’s display by putting on a pair of augmented-reality goggles and stepping inside a demonstration cockpit featuring three-dimensional interfaces and displays. CES 2019 runs from January 8-11 at the Las Vegas Convention Center.
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