Harman is “bringing cockpits to life”


The Tier 1 provider provides a deep dive into its user-first expertise inside the cockpit. By Elle Farrell-Kingsley

Harman, a subsidiary of Samsung, has been working with automakers to “deliver cockpits to life,” says Huibert Verhoeven, Senior Vice President for Digital Cockpits. Within the case of a cockpit, the consolidated working programs (OS) have completely different constraints. For instance, the digital cluster requires the show to reply shortly, whereas an infotainment system requires it to execute a big set of purposes (internet browser, air con, radio and video, Android or iPhone purposes). This cluster is security important and required to be predictable, whereas the infotainment must be open and safe.

With Harman’s virtualisation course of, powered by its type-1 ASIL B licensed hypervisor, the important thing requirement is to offer a secure, versatile, and managed technique of communication. Verhoeven notes that experiences inside the automobile have modified considerably by means of the years: “Our perspective on cockpits has shifted drastically because of the electrification of autos. The person has turn out to be rather more of a spotlight.”


For passengers, the leisure facet of infotainment has been quickly advancing to make the expertise extra pleasurable.

“On the infotainment aspect, we primarily noticed the transition from the display making an attempt to imitate a smartphone to a set of screens—there are vehicles proper now with as much as six screens all through the automobile—the place the data needs to be introduced in a manner that’s simply comprehensible and optimised for driving,” Verhoeven tells Automotive World. It is a trending trade matter, with many OEMs and suppliers trying to manage multiple screens inside the automobile throughout completely different customers and displays.

Harman’s infotainment choices embody options for gaming and in-vehicle live shows

Harman’s digital cockpit works by utilizing scalable {hardware} and software program platforms. The versatile {hardware} is safety operations centre (SOC) agnostic and may assist as much as seven shows, eight cameras, and 12 microphones, with each controller space community (CAN) and ethernet communication interfaces. {Hardware} modules mix with modular cluster and IVI software program modules to pre-integrate main options

However away from simply leisure, presenting insightful info, corresponding to highway updates and site visitors alerts, in a non-distracting method is an equally vital a part of the equation. “For the driving force, the data you current can inherently be very completely different from the passenger’s info,” he explains. Can the display be related so the person can forged info to any display, not simply visually but additionally with audio? What if customers begin creating completely different audio zones within the automobile—can passengers pursue particular person actions whereas additionally retaining communication with everybody else? These are areas that Verhoeven’s cockpit crew are researching and creating.

Safety for our clients is safety within the context of an inherently related automobile, which is the place curating the apps inside the cockpit additionally turns into vital

Introduced in February 2022, Harman’s newest cockpit addition, labelled as ‘human-centric’, consists of Prepared Collectively for simple in-vehicle leisure and communication administration. The Software program Enabled Branded Audio on-demand software program platform upgrades the sound high quality and have set of current unbranded automobile audio programs. The corporate additionally provides augmented actuality 3D navigation to reinforce the driving force and passenger journey expertise by means of high-quality, hyper-realistic graphics.


“Whereas managing infotainment, it’s additionally vital for automakers and suppliers to contemplate security,” says Verhoeven. One focus consists of superior driver help programs (ADAS)—usually used to watch the driving force—contained in the automobile. Whereas some automakers have been utilising programs that detect distracted drivers, Harman is trying to advance its options to the following degree by specializing in what could be executed to realize the eye of distracted or drowsy drivers. Potential options embody rising the air-conditioning or adjusting the quantity on the radio to extend alertness.

Harman driver monitoring system
Driver monitoring will likely be more and more vital with the realisation of partially automated automobile know-how

Harman calls this answer Prepared Care, which makes use of a digital camera to seize the driving force’s eyelids and decide their engagement and whether or not they’re doubtless to go to sleep. “Our strategy has been basically completely different. Sure, we detect drowsy drivers, however we fuse it with different elements. It’s not simply in regards to the driver falling asleep—what if the driving force is on the highway wanting on the display? Are they nonetheless mentally targeted on the duty at hand?”

These concerns will turn out to be more and more vital as automakers transfer in the direction of self-driving options. At SAE Ranges 3 and 4, there will likely be conditions the place the automobile is perhaps driving, however the driver continues to be accountable. “Then, the query turns into somewhat bit tougher. More often than not the driving force will depend on the automobile doing issues appropriately, however they nonetheless need to be current and alert to take over when wanted.”


Along with security, Harman’s digital cockpits are famend for his or her audio programs and voice recognition. The cockpit options neural networks that present synthetic intelligence features like face and pure voice recognition, which work each on-line and offline. “Safety is completely an underlying a part of voice recognition,” says Verhoeven. One department of voice recognition consists of bettering voice identification. Going additional, an space of concern consists of the instance of if a toddler was to get right into a self-driving automobile and request a journey—the know-how for this consideration hasn’t been absolutely developed but. “Voice signatures are there, and having the software program recognise variations is a mature know-how,” he says, as his crew proceed to develop this additional.

One other facet of safety consists of the related automobile and malware: “Safety for our clients is safety within the context of an inherently related automobile, which is the place curating the apps inside the cockpit additionally turns into vital.”

Though the long run is vital, Verhoeven believes that now’s a pivotal time within the automotive sector. The following step for the trade is stepping again from focusing wholly on the newest know-how innovation and as a substitute transferring in the direction of the person expertise—”We name it experiences per mile.” Moreover, Harman might impression the event of cockpits drastically, having fashioned and chaired an organisation the place completely different gamers inside the ecosystems dig deep into the query ‘What’s the person expertise?.’



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