Which characteristics should in-vehicle infotainment solutions have?
Interview with Jim Corbett, Cinemo Co-Founder/Executive Vice President
October 19th 2015
How does a car look like today?
Jim Corbett: Cars have gone through a radical transformation in recent years with ergonomic designs and environmentally friendly engines, but its perhaps on the inside where technology is dictating the biggest change. From the early beginings of a humble radio or cassette system, todays infotainment systems are endeavouring to bring a World of connectivity with a rich media experience to the car. For this to happen, software has to take on an increasingly critical role in the way it interacts with the driver and his passengers which is what Cinemo does.
If the current market trend is characterized by constantly increasing software engineering complexity, does that mean that users will face with more and more technical problems?
J.C.: No, we don’t believe so. Although there has frequently been a steep learning curve with traditional infotainment systems, there are several current industry initiatives in simplifying the process to make the systems more akin to what a user is facing day to day with his own devices. In the design of automotive grade quality embedded software such as Cinemo, we’ve also taken the approach of producing a platform solution that allows car makers to respond to the needs of the consumer yet consistantly delivers on stability, power and performance.
What are the things car buyers vs. car makers value the most?
J.C.: The digital media experience is now ubiquitous in this modern age and car buyers are expecting much the same inside the car as they do outside. At the same time, safety is a huge concern for the automotive makers so a balance needs to be struck. With technological advancements moving ahead at a rapid pace, time to market is an ongoing concern making reliability an even bigger issue as they strive to differentiate from competitors. Cinemo’s future-proof media centric architecture provides auto makers and Tier 1’s with the latest in-vehicle technology advancements in a compelling multi-featured system.
Is there a prefered operating system?
J.C.: Because of the nature of head unit design, budget constraints, and user driven specification, there is not a preferred operating system. Automotive makers can specify their feature requirements based on the car model and degree of connectivity needed, so often different hardware and operating systems can be embraced by manufacturers. Open systems such as Genivi and automotive grade Linux, as well as closed operating systems, are equally popular ensuring a broad choice. However, with its completely agnostic approach, Cinemo extends the choice with robust, feature rich solutions centered on its wide-ranging hardware and multi-operating system support.
How Cinemo meets the market demand?
J.C.: Cinemo has a fully scalable platform so its compeltely customizable based on the features demanded by the car maker. We can cater for entry level cars with more simplified multimedia playback and connectivity right up to higher end luxury models with rear seat screens and Blu-Ray. Our Distributed Playback™ and Distributed Media Management™ for example are designed for multi-screen, multi-device use. With the increasing advent of BYOD (Bring Your Own Device), into the car, Cinemo’s connectivity puts the control firmly with the driver or passenger.