The drivers ceased to employ protective goggles – we’re not talking about Ray-Bans here – many decades ago, but the BMW Group has decided that Google Glass was a project worthy to be followed – albeit with a classic twist.
The German automaker’s Mini brand has announced a system that employs vintage design cues and the absolute cutting edge technology to assist the drivers in getting more information and an all-round view of what’s outside their vehicle. Called the Mini Augmented Vision, the goggles will be demonstrated during the Shanghai auto show taking place in China this week, allowing information to be displayed in front of the driver without him taking the eyes off the road. The goggles use augmented reality to display warnings, speeds and directions onto the lens, thus putting it directly in front of the motorist’s eyes. That’s a step up from the already quite common heads-up display technology being pushed to the Mini models, but the device also ahs an ace up its sleeve – it can also bring live feeds from the cameras sitting outside of the car.
BMW and Mini’s engineers worked with San Francisco startup Osterhout Design Group and well-known mobile-phone chipmaker Qualcomm to bring the myriad of in-vehicle technology to the eyewear. The German automaker said the tech has been developed as a way of delivering the absolute essential information, minimizing driver distraction – one of the causes mostly associated with traffic accidents. They also didn’t deliver any commercial plans information for the device or even shed any light if the technology might enable third party providers integrate Mini’s in-car features with eyewear.