Audi made a return visit to this year’s CES (Consumer Electronics Show) in Las Vegas to show off some of the company’s latest innovations in technology, including their entrance into the tablet market and a laser headlight concept.
Breaking into the tablet market isn’t easy for companies already known for creating consumer electronics given the dominance Apple has with the iPad, so some may have been scratching their heads when they heard Audi, a German car company, was throwing their hat into the ring.
However, Audi is hoping to capture a specific market with their 10.2-inch Android tablet called the Mobile Audi Smart Display (we would have chosen a shorter name). During their keynote address on Monday, Audi’s head of development for electrics and electronics, Ricky Hudi, stated that their tablet “has been developed specifically for in-car use.”
Once connected to the car’s WiFi, the tablet can be used to control the cars infotainment system and provide full details on the performance of the vehicle. Because of its intended purpose of in-car use, Audi has made their tablet perform under extreme weather conditions and also crash resistant. Of course it can also be used as a full Android tablet when you don’t want to control features of your car.
It wasn’t just the company’s entrance into the tablet market that caught people’s attention though. Audi has continued to show an interest in innovating the cars exterior lighting systems, and now they are showing off the use of lasers to go along with their iconic LED lights. Yes, we said lasers.
Laserlight is being shown off on a Sport Quatrro concept car, similar to one recently shown off at the Frankfurt auto show this past September. While there may be a stigma about lasers being harmful, Laserlight is intended for good and not evil. The lasers provide three times the brightness of current LED headlights and have a range of 500 meters, double that of the LEDs. Early data shows that the lasers are also less distracting to other drivers on the road.
Audi also had a variety of other innovative technology to show off at this year’s CES, including a tool to time out the upcoming traffic lights so that drivers can adjust their speed to make more green lights, thus cutting down on CO2 emissions, and a Virtual Cockpit. Like most car concepts though, dates for when consumers will be able to get their hands on this technology is a little less clear.