Developer Predicts Big Gains for Digital Displays

June 20, 2018 at 12:00 AM

A Finish supplier of software used to create digital displays for vehicles predicts the proportion of new cars using such screens will surge to 70% by 2023 from 30% today.

Rightware Oy, which is owned by China’s ThunderSoft Co., says 35 vehicle brands across 20 carmakers use digital instrument panel displays and infotainment systems developed with the company’s Kanzi software.

Cars began using full digital displays in 2011, according to Rightware. The company attributes the growing use of such systems to advanced video game-type graphics, shorter development time and rising consumer demand.

Karma Automotive used Kanzi to develop the user interfaces in the high-tech Revero plug-in hybrid sedan. The tools allowed Karma to develop the displays in about one-third the time and with one-fifth the personnel than it would have taken otherwise, according to Rightware.

Ford and Visteon used Kanzi to develop the displays in the 2018 Mustang, which Rightware says is the first high-volume sports car with a reconfigurable digital instrument cluster. The optional 12-inch LCD cluster (pictured) features 26 color options, three drive mode configurations, eight gauge displays and 10 special animations, including a digital burnout and a simulated drag race “Christmas tree” starting light.

This year Rightware is launching Kanzi Connect, which allows in-vehicle displays to access images from remote servers. This can be used to render high-definition 3D maps in the instrument cluster.