HMI development tool brings consumer and web content into the car

October 23, 2013 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
With the new version 5.5, Elektrobit’s HMI (Human Machine Interface) development platform EB GUIDE has been enhanced by a variety of consumer-inspired features, including 3D content import, graphical animations and effects, speech recognition for dynamic data, as well as multi-touch and touch gesture recognition for smartphone-like user interaction in the car.

EB GUIDE 5.5 also enables carmakers and suppliers to create multi-modal HMIs enriched with HTML5 app-like content. According to EB vice president of Infotainment Products and Strategy Martin Schleicher, the automotive industry is currently working to provide drivers with a similar experience they have come to expect from their smartphones and other consumer electronics products. New features such as dynamic speech recognition and HTML5 enable carmakers to bring web-based applications into the vehicle.

The platform delivers an inter-process framework (IPC) for the integration of a HTML5 sandbox or any similar technology. The HTML5 integration is based on the EB GUIDE Graphic Target Framework (GTF) and an HTML5 enabled browser engine which is displayed in the core HMI via a HTML5 widget. The API (Application Programming Interface) available for app developers is directly generated from the development tool EB GUIDE Studio making it easier to grant HTML5 content a controlled channel to in-car data.

Management of pop-ups and possible driver distraction is handled by the core HMI. As a result, carmakers are able to model the usability of the whole HMI as well as the security and safety level access for external applications, ensuring that the device will always be up to date during the car's lifecycle and allowing the delivery of new content for the driver.

The new release also offers a DirectXRenderer, which enables EB GUIDE GTF on Microsoft Windows 8 RT. It also supports several new speech options, since external grammar files can be used directly in EB GUIDE Studio for more creative speech interfaces. In addition, version 5.5 allows dynamic vocabulary to adapt speech recognition to real-life data like MP3 lists, address books or radio stations. Furthermore, EB showcases a technology preview on the usage of statistic language models (SLM) to create more natural voice user interfaces.

EB GUIDE 5.5 also offers improved support for customers in Japan – the EB GUIDE Studio user interface and the