Home » Honor tries the smart car card with eye tracking. But it’s more marketing than real innovation

Honor tries the smart car card with eye tracking. But it’s more marketing than real innovation

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Honor tries the smart car card with eye tracking.  But it’s more marketing than real innovation

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The Chinese smartphone specialist company, a former subsidiary of Huawei, has experimented with a system which, thanks to the eye tracking provided by one of its smartphones, allows you to control a car without being behind the wheel. But is it really necessary?
Honor tries to ride the hype of the moment that is electrifying various smartphone manufacturers, namely that of entering, in some way, the automotive panorama. If there are those like Xiaomi who have chosen the main but also the most difficult path, that is, creating a car from scratch under its brand, there are those like Honor who have chosen a more “simple” path which however seems more like a mere attempt to make people talk about themselves rather than true innovation, at least if thought on a large scale.
In fact, the Chinese company, together with the magazine Autocar, which strangely acted as a “witness” to this “innovation”, showed through a video on YouTube how it is possible to control a car with just the movement of the eyes. This happened thanks to automotive engineer James Brighton who conducted the experiment using the eye tracking system available through a new smartphone model. An ad hoc software was installed on the smartphone with 4 options: engine on, engine off, auto forward and auto reverse. In practice, the user only has to look at one of the four “commands” for a few seconds to ensure that the eye tracking recognizes which of the 4 the gaze is placed on to activate the relevant function in the car.

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All very nice, it would seem, but not entirely convincing. Starting with the car, an Alfa Romeo Giulia “camouflaged” and customized specifically for this experiment. As if to say that if this system were ever applied in the real world, all cars would have to install the components used for the experiment.

Something practically impossible unless Honor has in mind, like Xiaomi, to build its own car, but the industrial economic strength of the former is far from being close to that of the latter, which in practice does not leave space for this imaginative hypothesis.

And strangely a combustion car was chosen. proudly internal combustion and without a trace of an electron. Strange right? especially at a time when the spotlight of technological and automotive news is on electric cars.

To be honest, it seems that Honor has set up a good marketing operation to make itself talked about in the automotive world, a market which, driven by the electric revolution and connected cars, is attracting various smartphone manufacturers (while car manufacturers such as Polestar offer smartphones. But Honor probably doesn’t have the strength or “real” ideas that can then be replicated on a large scale. and the reasoning seems to have been this: «I’ll do an innovative experiment without a doubt, practically useless (we say) I’ll put a bit of artificial intelligence into it , which is always good for us in this period, and I make people talk about me as an innovative automotive company.” The attempt is to be appreciated, for those who take the bait.

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