Connected Car News Volvo, GM, BVCPS, Smart Eye, Affectiva, Cipia, Leopard Imaging, ZETA & EvGo

In connected car news are Hyundai, Volvo, GM, BVCPS, Smart Eye, Affectiva, Cipia, Leopard Imaging, ZETA and EvGo.

Battery Resourcers Funded

Battery Resourcers, a vertically integrated lithium-ion battery recycling and manufacturing company, recently completed a $20 million Series B equity round with financing led by Orbia Ventures, the venture capital arm of the multinational Orbia, and participation from other investors including At One Ventures, TDK Ventures, TRUMPF Venture, Doral Energy-Tech Ventures and Jaguar Land Rover’s InMotion Ventures.

Free and Very Fast Charging from Hyundai IONIQ 5

Electrify America  announced a new agreement with Hyundai to provide all-electric Hyundai IONIQ 5 drivers with two years of unlimited 30-minute complimentary charging sessions from the date of purchase at Electrify America charging stations.

This announcement builds on an existing agreement between the two companies – announced earlier this year – to provide 250 kilowatt-hours of complimentary charging on Electrify America’s network for owners of 2021 Kona Electric and IONIQ Electric models.

Hyundai Motor North America today introduced the all-new IONIQ 5, an electric crossover utility vehicle (CUV) with a targeted driving range of 300 miles, design inspired by Hyundai’s ‘45’ EV concept, relevant technology and best-in-class ultra-fast charging from 10 to 80 percent in just 18 minutes. IONIQ 5 rides on Hyundai’s exclusive Electric-Global Modular Platform (E-GMP) that allows for more interior space and optimized performance. IONIQ 5 is part of Hyundai Motor Group’s plan to introduce 23 BEV models and sell 1 million BEV units worldwide by 2025. IONIQ 5 goes on sale this fall with a pre-reservation program for early purchasers that offers special benefits.

EV Warning Sounds for Volvo Electric Trucks

To improve safety, Volvo Trucks has developed an acoustic alert system with unique sounds for its electric truck models. The Volvo designed alert will increase safety by making pedestrians, cyclists and other road users aware of approaching trucks, which would otherwise be nearly silent. At the same time, the sounds are designed to be pleasant and unobtrusive, both for the driver and others close by.

The Volvo developed acoustic alert system for electric vehicles is actually not just one but four different sounds, informing people close by about what the truck is doing: moving forward, idling, reversing, etc. The sounds will vary in intensity, based on truck speed and will shift in frequency during acceleration and deceleration.

The large-screen HUD (Head-Up Display) developed by Automotive Company of Panasonic Corporation is installed in the Mitsubishi Outlander, a new crossover SUV produced by Mitsubishi Motors Corporation, which was released in the U.S., Canadian, and Puerto Rican markets from April this year. This is the first time a Panasonic WS HUD has been used by Mitsubishi Motors, and the first time for them to use a WS (windshield) type HUD.

The HUD is a system which presents a variety of information such as vehicle speed, navigation instructions, and MI-PILOT ASSIST*1 driver assist information in the driver’s line of sight by projecting it on the windshield. Since the display is projected near the center of driver’s field of view, it reduces the burden on the driver by reducing eye movements and enhances the smooth interaction between driver and system.

GM Approves VVCPS

Bureau Veritas’ Consumer Products Services division (BVCPS), a leading testing, inspection and certification provider, has announced that its automotive laboratory in Detroit, USA has been approved by General Motors Company (GM) for Automotive EMC Specification GMW3097:2019. The scope includes Radiated Emission; Radiated Immunity including Radar Pulse; Automotive Transients, as well as Electrostatic Discharge (ESD) Testing.

This new recognition enhances the presence of Bureau Veritas as a key testing player in the automotive supply chain. With Technical Competence Centers in Americas, EMEA and Asia, Bureau Veritas provides a comprehensive portfolio of testing, inspection/audit, homologation and international approvals management solutions to support the whole automotive supply chain in achieving fast and efficient global market access.

BVCPS’ Detroit automotive laboratory houses the latest technology for the compliance of automotive products within connected and autonomous vehicles. Services include EMC Validation, Wi-Fi RF, Bluetooth RF, Emark, GNSS and V2X Testing to help clients tackle the ever changing and complex national and international regulations

Smart Eye Buys Affectiva

Smart Eye and Affectiva announced that they have entered into an agreement in which Smart Eye will acquire Affectiva for USD $73.5 million.

Smart Eye has over two decades of experience building AI-based eye tracking and delivering automotive-grade Driver Monitoring Systems (DMS), as proven by 84 production contracts with 12 of the 20 largest global OEMs. Spun out of MIT Media Lab in 2009, Emotion AI pioneer Affectiva has, in recent years, broadened its technology to in-cabin sensing, using machine learning and computer vision to gain a deep, human-centric understanding of what is happening in a vehicle.

Rather than continuing as competitors in the automotive market, the companies are joining forces. By combining their best-of-breed technologies and two highly skilled and complementary teams, Smart Eye and Affectiva will bring to market unparalleled, automotive-grade Interior Sensing AI, better and faster than the competition. The combined company’s solution will not only improve automotive safety, saving human lives around the world, it will also provide differentiated mobility experiences that enhance wellness, comfort and entertainment.

“As we watched the DMS category evolve into Interior Sensing, monitoring the whole cabin, we quickly recognized Affectiva as a major player to watch,” said Martin Krantz, Founder and CEO of Smart Eye. “Affectiva’s pioneering work in establishing the field of Emotion AI has served as a powerful platform for bringing this technology to market at scale. At the end of the day, this is about saving lives and bridging the gap between humans and machines. In the future, looking back at this moment in time, I am convinced that this is a decisive moment for road safety thanks to the announcement that we have made today.”

In addition to strengthening Smart Eye’s automotive offering, Affectiva brings significant incremental revenues and profit from its industry-leading Media Analytics business. Used by 70 percent of the world’s largest advertisers, Affectiva’s enterprise-grade technology analyzes consumers’ emotional reactions to brand content and experiences. This technology has synergies with Smart Eye’s Research Instruments solutions, which provide the world’s leading research organizations with high-fidelity eye tracking systems for human factors research. The integration of Affectiva’s AI with Smart Eye’s eye tracking systems can provide human factors researchers and marketers with a more holistic and insightful view of people’s behaviors. Combined, the two companies will capitalize on the continued growth of behavioral technologies within the marketing and research industries, which has been accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We are thrilled to be merging with Smart Eye as the next step in Affectiva’s journey. This is a unique and exciting opportunity for us to join Smart Eye in bringing to market advanced AI with more comprehensive capabilities than either of us could provide alone,” said Dr. Rana el Kaliouby, Co-Founder and CEO of Affectiva. “Not only are our technologies very complementary, so are our values, our teams, our culture, and perhaps most importantly, our vision for the future. We share a conviction that the AI we are building now will one day become ubiquitous. It will be built into the fabric of the technologies we use in our daily lives and will forever change the way we interact with technology and each other in a digital world.”

The acquisition expands Smart Eye’s global presence. Affectiva’s Boston office gives Smart Eye a footprint within the vibrant technology innovation ecosystem on the US East Coast, and its Cairo office provides access to highly skilled local talent. Smart Eye is headquartered in Gothenburg (Sweden), with offices in Detroit (US), Tokyo (Japan), Chongqing (China), and soon Germany.

Leopard Imaging’s DMS

Leopard Imaging Inc. (Leopard Imaging), a leading global provider of embedded camera design and manufacturing, recently launched driver monitoring system (DMS) cameras LI-OV2311-IR-GMSL2 and LI-AR0144IVEC-GMSL2 to support real-time assessment of the driver’s current cognitive state. These DMS cameras help increase safety on the roads—reducing the rate of accidents caused by driver drowsiness and disengagements.

Leopard Imaging’s new cameras aim to reinvent road safety with advanced features and applications using global shutters and infrared light-emitting diodes (IR LED). LI-AR0144IVEC-GMSL2-055H is equipped with ON Semiconductor In-Vehicle Experience Camera Module (IVEC) AR0144, and LI-OV2311-IR-GMSL2-050H is equipped with OmniVision 2 MP CMOS image sensor OV2311. Implementing ON Semiconductor and OmniVision’s technology into Leopard Imaging’s cameras helps capture insightful image data at higher resolution—improving gesture recognition, eye tracking, head roll movement, machine vision, augmented reality, and more.

Pure Watercraft Joins ZETA

Pure Watercraft, the electric boating technology leader, has joined ZETA, the national coalition of electric vehicle (EV) manufacturers, charging companies, utilities, suppliers and others advocating for 100% of vehicles sold by 2030 to be EVs.

Pure Watercraft is the first member of ZETA to focus exclusively on electrifying off-road vehicles and vessels, starting with the Pure Outboard and integrated electric boats being introduced in 2021. While electrified on-road vehicles have captured substantial attention, the boat industry continues to be dominated by gas-powered engines.

Waylens Licenses Cipia

Cipia, an AI computer vision in-cabin automotive solutions provider, today announced that automotive intelligent video telematics company Waylens Inc. has licensed the company’s leading Driver Sense, driver monitoring system (DMS), for its automotive video platforms.

Waylens has integrated Cipia’s Driver Sense into their Secure4K device, and are expected to integrate Cipia’s DMS into future devices later this year. The first DMS integrated model, Secure4K, has officially launched and is now available to Waylens’ telematics service provider (TSP) customers.

Cipia’s Driver Sense DMS software utilizes the company’s proprietary AI and computer vision algorithms to monitor the driver in real-time, tracking for signs of drowsiness and distraction, and detecting the presence of a cell phone behind the wheel and proper seat belt usage among other actions. Utilizing an infrared (IR) sensor, Driver Sense monitors the driver in real-time detecting their state in all lighting conditions, through sunglasses and even while using a face mask, which became largely in use during this year of Covid-19.

Konard Tech & LHP Partner

Konrad Technologies and LHP Engineering Solutions are collaborating to deliver their new A3DAS Solution, a workflow management with test automation for ADAS and ADS functional safety standards to the automotive industry.

For the past 25 years, Konrad Technologies has been a global supplier of automated test equipment for the Consumer Electronics, Automotive, and Aerospace/Defense markets. LHP Engineering Solutions (LHP) is a global engineering services provider and technology integrator within the transportation sector.

With the ongoing adoption of advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS) and Automated Driving Systems (ADS) in the automotive industry, there is tremendous initiative to establish safety standards to support mass technology deployment. To ensure that these ADAS and ADS systems comply with safety standards, manufacturers need an efficient and cost-effective method for thoroughly testing and validating performance. LHP and Konrad Technologies are leveraging their experiences in functional safety and sensor test, respectively, to develop a cohesive testing and tracking workflow process for several ADAS/ADS safety standards like SOTIF and EuroNCAP.

The unique solution provided by the partnership between Konrad and LHP offers a significant improvement in cost savings, faster time to market, and the stand

EVgo Takes Reservations

EVgo (the “Company”), the nation’s largest public fast charging network for electric vehicles (EVs) and first powered by 100% renewable electricity,  announced the availability of a new reservation program, EVgo Reservations™ at 17 locations in Southern California, Northern California, and the Seattle area, enabling drivers in those markets to reserve EV chargers ahead of time.

As an owner and operator of its public fast charging stations, EVgo is committed to convenience and reliability in charging. In both customer surveys and informal outreach, a large number of EVgo drivers indicated that they would be interested in paying to reserve a charger to guarantee its availability at a particular time that aligned with their schedules. EVgo’s software solutions team developed a proprietary reservations feature that integrates multiple makes and models of electric vehicle fast chargers with the EVgo back-end software system, enabling drivers to make a reservation either while en route to a charger or up to two weeks in advance.

Earlier this year, EVgo began testing its reservations system at a handful of stations in San Francisco and Los Angeles. With today’s announcement, that pilot program has expanded to Sacramento, Santa Barbara, additional locations in the Los Angeles and Bay Area regions, and Redmond, Washington.

These chargers are located ideally for integrating the charging experience into other errands and ensuring optimal convenience. EVgo’s site host partners also benefit from the EVgo Reservations™ program, as approximately 80% of EVgo customers report they like to shop or run other errands while charging. Being able to lock in the exact time to charge makes it even easier and more convenient for customers to align those plans.

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