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Just when you thought voice control was the benchmark for in-car convenience, technology has poked its nose into the industry again, with what's known as Gesture Control. The we.CONECT Car HMI Concepts & Systems conference was held in Berlin a week ago. SoftKinetic's new gesture-recognition technology was showcased there.
According to them, cars will feature gesture recognition very soon. SoftKinetic did not reveal which car maker is going to implement this technology first, but instead had a demo so that people could see how it dworks.
In the car, most of the buttons and knobs will be replaced with a centrally mounted sensor in the dash. The driver just has to gesture for what feature he wants to access in the car, which will be displayed on the screen. This sensor will work even when it's pitch dark.
This hand movement control feature needs only a few minutes of training. Once you get a hang of how to use the control, operating the AC, music, navigation, etc. can be done without taking your eyes off the road.
Although intended to keep a driver safe and his eyes glued to the road, we wonder if all this is really necessary. After all, it most of us can adjust the volume of the music, for example, without taking our eyes off the road. We get the feeling that people will still prefer to get used to where the buttons and switches are placed in their cars, and be able to operate them without distraction.