The time to park is one of the most choked to many drivers. However, the technological evolutions of the vehicles seem that they will soon be able to breathe easy. The parking attendants are already a consolidated reality in the market and, in addition, they lead us to even more profound developments such as the consolidation of autonomous driving.
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Technology at the service of the parking manoeuvre
The first parking attendants were passive systems, based on distinctive signals that were placed on the back of the vehicles, as a kind of visual reference for the driver.
But already for years the manufacturers of the automotive industry are betting increasingly strong electronic systems capable of providing extra help. Some advances in this regard are the cameras in real time instead of rear-view mirrors (like those incorporated in the BMW) or the so-called Optical Parking System, a system that not only detects the presence of an obstacle in front of or behind the vehicle but also its position within the detection field.
In this case they are active parking assistants since they only activate when it is necessary to warn the driver of the presence of an obstacle. However, technological evolution does not stop there. As of 2008, some models have opted for self-parking systems.
Self-parking systems assisted
With the previous systems it is still the driver himself who is responsible for manoeuvring the address when parking. That is, these systems only assist the driver by analysing the environment through which the vehicle circulates. However, the assisted self-parking system is not only able to record this environment, but also to perform the manoeuvres necessary to park even reverse. Note that the driver can cancel the parking assistant at any time and return to “manual” mode.
Broadly speaking, the components that a vehicle needs to be able to incorporate this assistant are:
- Electromechanical power steering
- Brake system with ABS and ESP
- Parking sensors
- Specific external contour sensors
- Control unit
- Indicator control
- Push button to activate the system
- Speed sensors
- Warning buzzer
The definitive evolution towards autonomous driving?
These technological innovations establish the basis of what is about to come and that is already in the process of testing in some brands: self-driving or autonomous driving. Audi, for example, has been working on this system for 15 years and has already included partial automation in its most recent models. Other models, such as the Mercedes E-Class, incorporate an automatic pilot that is able to drive the vehicle autonomously and maintain the safety distance with the preceding vehicle at a speed of 210 km / h. In the United States, Tesla, and even companies that have little to do with the automotive industry, such as Google, have long been involved in this field.
What to expect
By 2020, virtually 100% of new vehicles will be a connected car. Today we can already see that these new cars can be connected to the internet, linked to the mobile and even communicate with the outside to receive directions. But it is only the beginning.
Car manufacturers have been talking about the connected car for several years, but there is not always a clear idea of what tools and utilities will come. To reflect the state of the connected car, we have closely followed the latest technologies presented by car manufacturers such as BMW, Ford, Volkswagen or Mercedes, but also technology brands such as Samsung or Qualcomm.
Fingerprint Reader Connected
The traditional system of keys will end up disappearing. The new cars already have electronic systems to start it and the next step is to add biometrics to increase safety.
In the same way that we use the fingerprint reader in the mobiles, manufacturers like Hyundai have also announced they will add it in their future cars.
Facial recognition technology is not exactly new. For more than ten years manufacturers such as Jaguar, BMW, Subaru or Tesla have used it in their cars not only to unlock the vehicle, but also to detect facial expressions and movements of the head that may indicate fatigue or drowsiness.
They are not the only ones to try something like that, since in 2011 Ford implanted heart systems in the belts to measure the stress level of the driver. Some sensors that finally ended up discarding arguing that there already existed in the market simpler solutions such as those found in wearables. Even so, detecting fatigue in time is one of the objectives of the connected car.
Open the car with the mobile
There is no infallible method. But one of the characteristics of connected cars and that is expected to expand to more models is the ability to open the car with the mobile phone, using NFC technology.
In the middle of last year the specification of the Digital Key Release standard was announced, available for companies such as Tesla or Mercedes and with which we can use the smartphone to open or close the car. More important will be version 2.0 that will be announced at the beginning of 2019 and where brands such as Apple, Audi, BMW, General Motors, Hyundai, LG Electronics, Panasonic, Samsung and Volkswagen have signed up, as well as Alps Electric, Continental Automotive, DENSO and Qualcomm.
If the 15-inch screen of the Tesla Model 3 looks great to you, that’s because you have not seen the 48-inch curved screen of the Byton M Byte.
Car manufacturers insist on integrating touch screens and that may be a bad idea. Although the interfaces are becoming clearer and the voice systems become more relevant, we will have to see
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