You’ll be excused for not being familiar with Canatu, but chances are you will hear about them in the future. That’s because the project that got them the “Concept cars” award is truly groundbreaking.
Part of a bigger vision called 3D Touch Cockpit, it’s the world’s first display with a 3D touch surface that combines a unique visual appearance with a new operating concept enabled by stretchable Canatu CNB films and sensors.
Co-developed with Continental AG, the 3D Touch Surface display features active haptic feedback and force sensing, as well as topographical elements that guide the fingers. Therefore, the display enables blind operability and ensures greater safety by minimizing driver distraction. The user experience is said to benefit as well compared to conventional displays.
Canatu also claims its technology offers new degrees of design freedom, enabling carmakers to place such displays pretty much anywhere inside the car. For example, the passenger-side dashboard panel can become a dormant 3D smart surface that reveals itself only when needed.
The 3D Touch Cockpit concept interior combines transparent 3D touch sensors that can be placed under displays, plastic, glass, leather or textile surfaces.
Canatu says it can create lightweight 3D touch controls for window, mirror and seat adjustments, 3D buttons and switches for the steering wheel, tactile 3D controls on display areas for minimal distraction, as well as displays that remain hidden until needed.
Check out the videos to see how all these technologies, which are bound to find their way into future cars, work.