Tag Archives: connected cars

Fuel Book turns your car into a smart car


This plug-and-play device provides fuel analysis, social territory mapping, self-diagnostics and more.


Who recalls the Seinfeld episode when Jerry and the gang are in search of Kramer’s car in a multi-level parking garage of a shopping mall? Most likely, you too have experienced a similar situation. Wouldn’t it be nice if there was an easy-to-use system that could help identify the whereabouts of your whip instead of having to navigate around countless levels that all look alike?

Over the next five years, there will be millions of connected cars on the road capable of consuming, creating and sharing web-based data. But what about those older automobiles that lack Internet enablement? Fortunately, one Chennai-based startup has developed a plug-and-play device that can transform any ‘dumb’ vehicle into a smarter ride.

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The idea first came about after its creator, Deepak John J, ran out of fuel and wished his car had properly notified him before it went completely dry. With that in mind, Fuel Book was designed as a self-installable unit that, along with its accompanying app, can create a smart vehicle right through its diagnostic port. Once connected, a user simply launches the app and syncs the device over Bluetooth to open a new world of possibilities. Using the Fuel Book, a driver can interact with a wide-range of features such as fuel analysis and mileage tracking, among a number of others.

Thanks to the pint-sized gadget, a driver will have the ability to easily locate the nearest fuel station, unlock the door with a knock on their phone, and stay one step ahead of the game with self-diagnostics. Hate traffic? Trying to decide whether you should get off the next highway exit? Luckily, users can transform their horn into a smart sensing apparatus that can find out exactly what the hold-up is by sending a message to the driver in front — a feature which will surely come in handy for ambulances to notify users in its path to make way.

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Beyond that, Fuel Book features a social territory mapping capability that informs a driver 10 seconds prior to a bump in the road. A built-in accelerometer also measures and tracks a vehicle’s speed, which can be pretty useful in the event of an accident or if pulled-over. The device even immediately alerts a registered emergency number along with the appropriate GPS coordinates through SMS or another Fuel Book via its “tag mode,” which enables a user to share its location with others (especially for those traveling in a caravan).

What’s more, Fuel Book is equipped with a backend driver analysis feature called AI Engine that collects and sends user behavior data. In other words, the gadget will know based on user history if a driver will make a turn, or at which point in time they will accelerate and hit the brake. With access to this information, the AI Engine can provide a smart caution notification if trouble awaits.

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Built around an Atmel | SMART Cortex-M3 MCU, the compact gizmo is equipped with a three-axis accelerometer, a magnetometer and temperature sensor, and features both Bluetooth and RF connectivity along with NFC for pairing. Its mobile app is compatible with most newer iOS, Android and Windows smartphones, as well as Android Wear and Pebble smartwatches.

Want to bring that old 2005 Chevy Cavalier into the Internet of Things era? Head over to Fuel Book’s official Indiegogo page, where the team is currently seeking $50,000. Shipment is expected to begin in November 2015.

Report: Internet of Things expected to quadruple in size by 2020


Verizon reveals that while the IoT has expanded massively in the last couple of years, we’ve barely scratched the surface.


The Internet of Things has certainly transcended beyond its state of infancy and is well on its way of gaining momentum, according to Verizon at least. In its latest findings, the carrier revealed that more than a billion devices are already connected and running business-to-business IoT operations.

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In its “State of the Market” reportVerizon published that there were 1.2 billion various smart devices, and that the number is expected to rise to 5.4 billion by 2020 for an annual growth rate of 28%.

“It’s not hype. The Internet of Things is already having a massive impact on business. It offers organizations the opportunity to transform how they operate, and gives both new entrants and established players the ability to innovate and disrupt,” the company writes. “Adoption is growing rapidly, but IoT isn’t yet widespread. Whether you’re in the public sector or private; big or small — if you don’t have an IoT strategy, you should.”

Verizon experienced a 45% year-over-year revenue growth in its IoT business in 2014, with 4G LTE activations growing by 135%. Currently, the telecom manages more than 15 million IoT-enabled connections for a wide range of industries. To date, company experts estimate that just 10% of enterprises have deployed IoT technologies extensively, however research commissioned by Verizon from ABI Research forecasts massive growth ahead, with the number of business-to-business IoT connections more than quadrupling over the next five years.

Additionally, the global communications company also cites ABI Research in its revelations that organizations will introduce more than 13 million health and fitness tracking devices to the enterprise by 2018. In doing so, wearables can enhance wellness throughout the workplace, not to mention improve efficiency in hospitals and reduce the cost of healthcare.

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Among those who use Verizon’s services, manufacturing has seen the biggest increase in machine-to-machine operations, with a 204% increase year-over-year. It’s followed by finance and insurance with a 128% increase, and media and entertainment, which has experience an uptick of 120%. Home monitoring and hospitality weren’t too far beyond with 89% and 88% jumps, respectively. Verizon data also shows an 83% YoY growth in IoT in the transportation and distribution sector as well.

In fact, Verizon’s telematics experts note that 14 car manufacturers account for 80% of the worldwide automotive market, and all of them have a connected car strategy. The report predicts that by 2025, at least five countries will have set a “zero road fatalities” target, relying on intelligent connected cars and smart road infrastructure to avoid and mitigate accidents.

Verizon analysts add that in 10 years, smart cities capabilities will become a critical consideration for companies deciding where to invest and open facilities, due to their impact on operating costs and talent availability. Recent data already shows a 46% YoY growth in the number of IoT connections in the public sector.

According to the report, IoT growth is being fueled by a mix of technological, political and social factors which are driving more organizations to adopt IoT-enabled solutions. For example, use of social media and mobile technology has transformed consumer and citizen expectations, while the declining cost of sensors, connectivity, and data processing power is making the ROI equations for IoT projects look even more appealing.

The carrier went on to highlight ever-growing security concerns for a constantly-connected world as well by noting, “In a mature IoT world, there will be millions of intelligent endpoints, such as cars, pacemakers, and aircon units, each equipped with dozens of active sensors and millions of lines of code. Many of these endpoints will be accessible, often physically, to hackers. The network connections that these endpoints use to communicate may also be vulnerable, giving access to central applications and databases.”

Interested in reading the Verizon report in its entirety? Download it here.

CarVi wants to help make your old car smarter


One San Jose startup has just unveiled a sophisticated virtual driving system, with advanced safety features.


While several of today’s car are equipped with sensors, cameras and other next-gen technologies, what about that old 10-year-old Chevy Cavalier or Ford Taurus of yours? Though many modern-day vehicles may be embedded with advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) that can aid in everything from parking and navigating to steering and preventing accidents, a majority of drivers are not fortunate enough to have such enhanced mobiles. That was until CarVi came along.

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The San Jose startup has developed a mountable ADAS for older vehicles that simply connects to your smartphone via Wi-Fi. The module — which is affixed inside a windshield below the rearview mirror — uses vision-based safety features to gather real-time data from your mobile device and a single lens camera. This allows the system to communicate with its corresponding app so that CarVi can detect a wide-range of possible situations, giving visual and audio alerts in the event one shall arise.

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While CarVi may not be synced to your car’s computer, it can certainly can provide an extra set of eyes while at the wheel. It knows if you happen to drift outside of a lane and senses brake lights ahead. More impressively, the ARM-based device is capable of learning your driving patterns and can give your car just enough gas to efficiently ease into the flow of traffic. At the end of the day, the mobile app will let you see just how safely you’ve been driving, or not, so you can hone your skills in the future.

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The team has geared the technological co-pilot towards elderly and teenage drivers, as well as those just looking for a little extra peace of mind while on the road. What’s nice about CarVi is that it offers a cheaper, more flexible option for those looking for a more connected ride. It’s compatible with more than 95% of cars and has been successfully tested in Ford, Nissan, Toyota, BMW and other major brands.

Looking to give your old whip some new smarts? Head over to the project’s official Indiegogo page, where the team is currently seeking $100,000. Pending all goes to plan, delivery is expected to begin in August 2015. Those interested in CarVi may also want to check out this latest interview on the future of vehicles in the IoT.

Akolyt is a smart sensor that doubles as a personal driving assistant


“It’s not your car getting connected, it’s you becoming a better driver.”


As smart devices continue to infiltrate our daily lives from the house to the workplace, it won’t be long before they enter our vehicles as well with  approximately 250 million connected cars on the road by 2020. And, while a number of manufacturers have already begun embedding next-gen technology into our automobiles, new solutions are emerging that can make older ones smart, too. Good news for anyone with a ride that dates back to 2001.

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Among the latest startups to take aim on this market is Drust. The Paris-based startup has developed Akolyt, a smart sensor that plugs directly a car’s OBD connector and gathers data on all things under the hood, such as brake patterns, gear changes, and speed. That data is then transmitted via Bluetooth to the user’s smartphone and is displayed in easy-to-digest bits of real-time data. Almost as if it were your personal driving assistant, the sensor can enhance driver efficiency, increase the reliability of the car, and reduce up to 30% fuel consumption.

In the event that something is wrong — and after all, with older vehicles it’s bound to happen — a light will immediately appear on the dashboard, indicating the problem. This means no more sifting through the glove box clutter to locate the the owner’s manual, just to learn that the you still have no idea what the vague light means. Instead, Akolyt explains clearly the origin of any problem so you can handle the situation properly — and better yet, not be ripped off by mechanics! Additionally, the sensor will examine your car before each trip to ensure that everything is indeed okay as you head off to work, class or the grocery store.

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The accompanying app also keeps tabs on a driver’s daily route, maintenance schedules, appointments, and a number of other key reminders. More importantly, the device is equipped with an emergency assistance feature as well. If in a fender bender, Akolyt will immediately verify that you’re okay, and when help is necessary, will automatically notify authorities of the incident.

At the end of each journey, the mobile app collects on-the-road data and generates statistics based on performance, updating your “driving score.” This is certainly something that can come in handy for parents with teenage drivers or bantering with friends over who’s the better driver.

Based on an ARM Cortex-M3 MCU, the plug-in device is packed with Bluetooth 4.0 to communicate with its companion app, a long-range module to connect to the Internet, Flash memory so trip data can be stored, and a built-in accelerometer to track information precisely.

Those wishing to become more intelligent, well-informed drivers can head over to the project’s official Indiegogo page where the team is currently seeking €30,000. What’s more, Drust has a few stretch goals as well — one of which includes adding support for American-made cars. If all goes to plan, initial tests will begin in April 2015 with production slated for August 2015.

Report: 1 in 5 cars will be connected by 2020


The increased consumption and creation of digital content within cars will lead to sophisticated information and entertainment systems.


If you buy a car within the next five years, it’s likely that it will be Internet-enabled. That’s the prediction Gartner has shared, anyway. The market research firm has released its latest report that expects there to be approximately 250 million connected cars on the road by 2020, paving the way for new in-vehicle services and automated driving capabilities. In other words, one in five vehicle will boast some sort of wireless network connection.

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During the next five years, the proportion of new vehicles equipped with this capability will increase dramatically, making connected cars an integral element of the rapidly-growing Internet of Things (IoT) — an area Gartner forecasts will entail 4.9 billion connected things in use this year and will reach 25 billion by 2020.

“The connected car is already a reality, and in-vehicle wireless connectivity is rapidly expanding from luxury models and premium brands, to high-volume midmarket models,” explained James F. Hines, Gartner Research Director. “The increased consumption and creation of digital content within the vehicle will drive the need for more sophisticated infotainment systems, creating opportunities for application processors, graphics accelerators, displays and human-machine interface technologies. At the same time, new concepts of mobility and vehicle usage will lead to new business models and expansion of alternatives to car ownership, especially in urban environments.”

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The proliferation of vehicle connectivity will have implications across the major functional areas of telematics, automated driving, infotainment and mobility services. Driving the adoption of connected car technology is the expansion of high-bandwidth wireless network infrastructure, rising expectations for access to mobile content and better service from smartphones and tablets. While many of the major automakers have rolled out connected cars in a number of limited models, in-vehicle wireless connectivity is rapidly expanding from luxury and premium brands to high-volume mid-market versions. Take for instance, General Motors, Hyundai and Chrysler, who have each partnered with telecoms AT&T, Verizon and Sprint, respectively.

By 2018, two automakers will have announced plans to become technology companies and expand their connected-vehicle value experiences to other industries and devices, Gartner said in a report last year. And over the next five years, at least one auto company will achieve 10% of its total revenues from connected mobility and service offerings.

“The increased consumption and creation of digital content within the vehicle will drive the need for more sophisticated infotainment systems, creating opportunities for application processors, graphics accelerators, displays and human-machine interface technologies,” Hines stated.

As the amount of information being fed into in-car head unit or telematics systems grows, vehicles will be able to capture and share not only internal systems status and location data, but also changes in surroundings in real-time, Computer World writes. Ultimately, your car will become just another part of your mobile data plan.

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“To facilitate that kind of shift, connected-vehicle leaders in automotive organizations need to partner with existing ecosystems like Android Auto or Apple CarPlay that can simplify access to and integration of general mobile applications into the vehicle,” Gartner Analyst Thilo Koslowski shared in last year’s report.

The Gartner report follows recent revelations from IBM, who in the company’s Automotive 2025 study found that a majority of executives believe cars will become more personalized for drivers over the next 10 years, but autonomous vehicles and self-driving cars will not yet be ubiquitous. In fact, IBM anticipates that by 2025, vehicles will be intelligent enough to configure themselves to a driver and other occupants. In other words, cars will be able to learn, heal, drive and socialize with others on the road, and their surrounding environment through vehicle-to-vehicle communication.

Without question, the demand for advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) is on the rise as well. According to ABI Research analysts, the market is expected to grow from $11.1 billion last year to $91.9 billion by 2020, hitting the $200 billion mark by 2024. Fueling that growth is the expansion of the technology from high-end luxury vehicles to more affordable cars and mini automobiles. One of the most popular systems on high-end vehicles, adaptive cruise control (ACC), will continue to gain popularity across all vehicle segments, with shipments experiencing a CAGR of 69% between 2014 and 2020.

 

Video: Rob Valiton discusses the future of automotive at CES 2015


The car of the future could have a curved center display with tons of real estate for driver information and entertainment. 


It’s no surprise that automotive technology has emerged as an integral component of our digital lifestyle, as more and more consumers are looking to bring their mobile devices seamlessly into their vehicles. During CES 2015, ARMdevices.net had the chance to catch up with Rob Valiton, Atmel Senior Vice President & General Manager, to discuss the connected car — most notably, the next generation of infotainment user interfaces.

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With up to a hundred million lines of code, at least 30 MCU-controlled devices — and some with as many as 100 — the vehicle is the ideal application to bring smart, connected devices in the era of the Internet of Things (IoT). Not only will these automobiles be packed with futuristic functionality ranging from navigation and parking assistance to diagnosis and road conditions, they will become much more intuitive and integrated with smartphone-like interfaces. In order to provide this, the car of tomorrow will feature a curved center console display offering a large amount of real estate for information to drivers. And, the newly-announced AvantCar 2.0 will make this possible.

Luckily, the AvantCar 2.0 brings advanced connectivity into the vehicle through an advanced HMI console connected to a concept car highlighting car access, car networking, MCUs, audio-over-Ethernet, MHL support and security technologies. Focusing on user requirements, the fully-functional console concept boasts curved touchscreens using maXTouch touchscreen controllers and XSense flexible touch sensors, as well as Atmel’s QTouch with proximity sensing, and LIN networking for ambient lighting controls.

Report: The car of 2025 will repair and drive itself


An IBM study says more intelligent cars will be commonplace by 2025, while self-driving cars may not.


With the emergence of the IoT, our world is becoming increasingly more connected. Not only is it our kitchens and living rooms, but smart “things” are beginning to infiltrate our garages and roads as well. Today, it is more apparent than ever before that consumers are more engaged, meaning they will demand a more seamlessly-integrated, personalized experience inside their ride. As more cars go online, IBM points out that the lines of the automotive industry will blur and the ecosystem will expand to include electronics and telecommunications enterprises.

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According to the company’s Automotive 2025 study — which was based on interviews from 175 automobile industry executives spanning 21 countries — 38% expect at least partial autonomous cars over the next 10 years that will be able to drive themselves in certain designated areas. While these cars will be far more digitally-savvy and connected than anything we have today, only 8% of the executives predicted entirely driverless automobiles. That isn’t to say they wouldn’t welcome them.

In fact, a vast majority (87%) of those surveyed claimed that they believe partially-automated driving, such as an expansion of today’s self-parking or lane change assist technologies, will enter a state of ubiquity in the coming years. Meanwhile, 55% said highly-automated driving, where the system recognizes its limitations and calls the driver to take control, if needed, allowing the driver to perform some non-driving tasks in the meantime, will also be adapted by 2025.

The study found that nearly one-fifth (19%) of the business leaders felt that their companies are fully prepared for the challenges of the next decade, while one-third (33%) believed their organizations are adaptable to facing those obstacles.

The IBM study goes onto reveal that by 2025, vehicles will be intelligent enough to configure themselves to a driver and other occupants. In other words, cars will be able to learn, heal, drive and socialize with other automobiles, and their surrounding environment through vehicle-to-vehicle communication. Indeed, nearly 80% of the execs believe these cognitive technologies will be a key component of how vehicles learn and reason to provide a better experience for the occupants and optimize their own performance. With the rise of V2V communication, next-gen cars will be equipped to monitor drivers with heart conditions for signs of heart attack or even repair itself without human intervention.

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Soon, our vehicles will be able to take on their own “digital personas” and join car-to-car “social networks,” an area in which 57% of respondents felt would come to fruition over the next decade. This would enable vehicles to share not only traffic and weather conditions, but information specific to a given automaker. The study also indicated that nearly two out of every three (63%) executives saw mobility services or ride-sharing as an area for greater collaboration with consumers, while more than half (59%) cited product design, marketing campaigns (54%) and service/after-sales (52%) as areas that the industry could tremendously benefit from working directly with drivers.

Whatever the future holds, IBM encourages that “automotive enterprises must adapt to how consumers can access vehicles in new ways and use them in their digital lives — and how cars now fit into an increasingly complex web of transportation options. Looking toward 2025, those enterprises that welcome the openness transforming the business are setting the stage for success.”

While we await 2025, Reuters has recently published their latest report on The State of Innovation in the Automotive Industry 2015. According to the global news agency, GM, Toyota and Hyundai are all making a huge investment on self-driving cars. Though Google may have gotten the lion’s share of the headlines when it comes to autonomous vehicles, a number of today’s biggest carmakers are filing the most patents in this space. GM, in particular, has shown an astonishing increase in interest with the most documents published in 2013, as the chart below demonstrates.

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So, what’s next for automotive market in the forthcoming years? Whether it’s sensor-laden vehicles or flying cars, a much smarter, safer and secure future is in store. Without question, today’s drivers make demanding customers for carmakers, so automotive electronics will remain a demanding application area, an area in which we know quite a bit about. Buckle up, we’re driving the Internet of Things in the fast lane

Verizon launches connected car product for older vehicles


While a number of today’s cars are becoming increasingly Internet-enabled, what about older vehicles? Shouldn’t they become smarter, too?


During the 2015 North American International Auto Show, Verizon unveiled a new connected car service that enables drivers of older cars to receive roadside assistance as well as learn more about maintenance that may be required. At the moment, over 200 million vehicles currently lacking wireless capabilities in the U.S. alone could benefit from the new solution.

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“As one of the largest communications companies in the world, we are dedicated to providing consumers with innovative technology solutions that connect people, solve challenges and inspire change. Verizon Vehicle is a unique and truly holistic aftermarket solution available to over 200 million vehicles on the road today. It affords millions of drivers the power of knowing when things aren’t working well, potentially before a breakdown occurs — fostering a safer, smarter and more economical way to drive and maintain a vehicle,” said Erik Goldman, Verizon Telematics President.

Verizon Announces Service To Help 200 Million Vehicles On The Road Today

The subscription-based service will work on models dating back to 1996, and operates through an OBD reader that can easily be self-installed in the under-dash diagnostic port, a Bluetooth-enabled speaker attached to the visor and a complementary smartphone app. Users can opt to receive alerts via text, call, smartphone notifications or email in the event an issue is detected with their vehicle. Other features will enable drivers to diagnose mechanical problems, talk to car mechanics in real-time and call for help in an emergency. If drivers need assistance, the system’s built-in GPS can identify their exact location and relay this data a tow truck dispatch with precision.

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Looking to connect your car? Explore the new solution in more detail here. Meanwhile, don’t forget to read up on miaLinkup, a multi-functional wireless device that is looking to drive your 20-year-old vehicle into the IoT era.

Atmel stays ahead of the curve with its next-generation car center console

Connected cars are expected to be among several of the key trends at this year’s International CES. With up to a hundred million lines of code, at least 30 MCU-controlled devices — and some with as many as 100 — the vehicle is the ideal application to bring smart, connected devices in the era of the Internet of Things (IoT). Not only will these vehicles be packed with next-gen functionality ranging from navigation and parking assistance to diagnosis and road conditions, they will become much more intuitive and integrated with smartphone-like interfaces. In order to provide this, the automobile of tomorrow will feature a curved center console display offering a large amount of real estate for information to drivers. And, the newly-announced AvantCar™ 2.0 will make this possible.

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The successor to the concept introduced a year ago, the AvantCar 2.0 is equipped with an array of Atmel technologies including a 2.5D model of a car connected to a fully-functional central display demonstrating car access, car networking, MCUs, audio streaming over-Ethernet-AVB and CryptoAuthentication™ products. The futuristic AvantCar 2.0 sports active touchscreens, curved form factors, personalized color schemes and navigation menus via touch buttons and sliders in a cutting-edge sleek center console.

Focusing on user requirements for future generation automobiles, AvantCar 2.0 delivers an advanced human machine interface (HMI). The new concept boasts curved touchscreens highlighting HMI in upcoming automobiles using Atmel technologies like maXTouch touchscreen controllers and XSense flexible touch sensors, as well as Atmel’s QTouch™ with proximity sensing, LIN networking for ambient lighting controls, and automotive-qualified AVR MCUs.

“As a leading provider of smart, connected devices with sophisticated, easy-to-use HMI, Atmel is committed to delivering a state-of-the-art connected experience in the automobile,” Rob Valiton, Atmel SVP and GM of Automotive, Aerospace and Memory Business Units. “Atmel’s AvantCar 2.0 showcases the connected car and delivers a futuristic center console showcasing our latest technologies in a sleek, slim center console with increased performance and fully connected throughout the car. We are excited to bring this next-generation concept to the public demonstrating the future of HMI in the connected car.”

Upon quick glance, one thing you will notice is that the AvantCar 2.0 is a bit different than your typical console — no more mechanical buttons or clunky knobs. 

Instead, the touchscreens integrated capacitive touch buttons and sliders enable users to navigate general applications typically found within an automotive center displays. The second generation demo is slimmer than its predecessor, offering a more appealing aesthetic with improved performance including Silicon Image’s MHL® (Mobile High-Definition Link) solution — a technology that allows users to easily transmit content from a smartphone, tablet, or other mobile device to larger displays such as in-dash automotive displays, while charging the mobile device.

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“The last one wasn’t as tailored to automotive standards for display quality,” Paul Kopp, Atmel Director of Automotive, told Venture Beat in a recent interview. “It also has curved liquid crystal displays (LCDs) that weren’t available before. It will look more like a curved surface. The designers really want that in automotive now. The lines will blend more with the vehicle itself.”

While carmakers have been using haptic feedback, it’s apparent that the trend has shifted towards much larger screens and easier touch technology. Tomorrow’s displays will likely be pretty big. While the average is currently about 8 inches diagonal now, it could, in fact, head closer to 10 inches or 12 inches in future models.

“When Tesla came out with a 17-inch main screen, that woke up a lot of the American manufacturers to the idea of bigger displays in the car,” Kopp told Venture Beat. “The right size for the user? The jury is still out.”

Those heading to Vegas for the world’s largest electronics show can experience the newly-unveiled AvantCar 2.0 concept by speeding on over to the Atmel booth (#MP25760) in the LVCC South Hall.

miaLinkup is bringing the IoT to your older vehicles

While today’s cars are becoming increasingly more connected than ever before, what about those dating back to 1995? Well, the miaLinkup — which recently completed a successful Kickstarter campaign — is a multi-functional wireless device that is looking to bring the Internet of Things to any 20-year-old (or younger) vehicle. 

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Based on an AT45DB and an ARM Cortex-M4 MCU, the super tiny device measures just 2.4″ x 1.7″ x 1” and weighs less than 2.5 ounces. Its ultra compact size allows a user to easily plug it into their vehicle’s data port, conveniently located under the dashboard. Once paired with its companion iOS or Android app via Bluetooth, a driver can monitor their car’s battery, manage fuel costs, track trips, protect young drivers, gain remote access, use head-up display, prevent unauthorized movement, as well as locate their vehicle using the device’s built-in sensors.

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“Your car and smartphone will be always connected wirelessly and seamlessly, whether your car is on or off, without any recurring yearly or monthly fees,” a company rep writes.

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Apart from that, the smart gadget also comes in what team calls a “Pro Plus” version, which packs an assortment of other features like FM radio transmitter, NFC pairing, tire pressure monitoring systm, MEMS digital microphone, a speaker, microSD card slot for up to 32GB, as well as support for both Ford Medium Speed and Single Wire CAN.

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In addition, miaLinkup’s open API — aptly dubbed miaAPI — enables developers to create more apps that can interact with a vehicle via the miaLinkup device using the Atmel powered ECUemu3000 tool.

So, whether you’re having a Dude, Where’s My Car? moment and cannot locate your parked car, or would like to keep a Ferris Bueller’s Day Off valet incident from happening, the miaLinkup is the answer. Learn more by heading over to the project’s official page, where the team more than tripled its original $50,000 goal.