Your car could act a lot more like your iPhone in the future – at least according to Apple patent fillings for an augmented reality windshield.
Patently Apple found a European patent application for a windshield display that presents map and road conditions in autonomous cars. Apple has been testing self-driving cars, but hasn’t divulged much about the project.
Stretching on the theme of artificial intelligence, the alleged augmented reality (AR) windshield would support FaceTime sessions to connect passengers sitting in separate autonomous cars.
“In some embodiments, an augmented reality display system included in a vehicle enables visual communication between an occupant on the vehicle and a remotely located user, including an occupant of a separate vehicle,” mentioned in Apple patent.
The technology would rely on a range of sensors in the car itself including: Infrared cameras, light beam scanning devices, ultrasonic sensors, depth cameras, radar devices and GPS.
Beyond maps, a HUB windscreen would allow drivers to better monitor their driving speed, Apple stated.
It seems that Apple is also concerned about passengers who might be worried about sitting in a vehicle that can drive itself. If the system detects high stress levels from your eye motion, posture, gestures, body temperature, breathing rate, eye blinking, or heart rate it can change the AR display to calm you down.
Another self-driving car system, Drive.ai, similarly shows 3D driving and environment data on an on-board display. “Displaying a simple visualisation helps passengers feel more comfortable”, a blog post from last month explains.
A timeline for the technology has not been announced. A patent also does not guarantee a product will ever be made. According to Business Insider, in 2013, Apple filled a patent for an iPad-MacBook hybrid that would use magnetic connectors to latch a tablet to a keyboard. In 2010, it filled a patent for a smart bike that would use sensors to track speed, distance and heart rate.