Jaguar Land Rover develops contactless touchscreen

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Driver’s eyes stay on the road, bacteria and viruses under control

An innovation that Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) is now introducing is paradoxical and contradictory: a contactless touchscreen. But it can work, the British manufacturer believes. The “Predictive Touch” technology developed in cooperation with the University of Cambridge should allow sensors and artificial intelligence to predict where the driver’s finger will hit. A touch is then no longer necessary.

The driver should have two of these: firstly, the driver does not have to concentrate so hard to hit the right point, and secondly, the lack of contact with the surface could inhibit the spread of bacteria and viruses, believes JLR.

The targeted point on the touchscreen is not hit on the first attempt, especially on uneven roads. Consequence: The driver is distracted, his attention deviates from the traffic. The new technology should prevent this. After attempts by the British, predictive touch technology shortens the driver’s interaction with the user interface by up to 50 percent.

According to the JLR, the gestures are recognized by “optical or radio-based sensors”, which are known from consumer electronics. In addition, there is data from an eye tracker for analyzing eye movements. This should make it possible to grasp the user’s intent in real time. Machine learning is also used. That should mean that the system is learning: it is slowly recognizing what the driver intends to do when he makes a certain movement with his eyes and fingers.

According to the JLR, the solution has already reached a high level of technical maturity. It is based on software and can therefore be integrated into existing touchscreens – provided the sensors are available.

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