Car Multimedia

“Virtual Cockpit” in the new Audi TT Display-based instrument cluster bundles all of the instrument readings in the driver's field of vision Bosch is the system supplier

  • Extraordinary luminous intensity, high resolution, intense color depth
  • Maximum flexibility in the display of information
  • Automotive Interiors Expo Award: “Interior Innovation of the Year”
The new Audi TT comes equipped with an innovative display and operating concept. A display-based instrument cluster replaces the previous technology and bundles all of the instrument, navigation, and multimedia information right in the driver's field of vision. Audi calls this driver-oriented concept the “Virtual Cockpit”. Bosch is the system supplier for this instrument cluster.

The crystal-clear, high-contrast TFT display features extraordinary luminous intensity of 800 candela (cd) for perfect readability under all light conditions. The screen has a diagonal size of 12.3 inches, particularly high resolution of 1440 x 540 pixels, and color depth of 24 bits.

One of the big advantages of a display-based instrument cluster is its versatility in displaying content. The new Audi TT comes with two basic display modes. The traditional mode shows large, digitally produced round gages – but there are no mechanical pointers or other moving parts. The second mode trims down the virtual round speedometer and tachometer and shifts them to the lower corners, leaving plenty of room for a large navigation display, music selections or telephone connections. However, the flexibility inherent in the system would permit other displays as well, even allowing differences in the various vehicle models.

Three-dimensional reproduction of objects
The extremely high overall design quality of the display-based instrument cluster is in total compliance with the development requirement for the very best in display quality. It is achieved by the use of a high-performance dual-process architecture. One processor takes care of the graphics while the other handles the remaining functions. Thanks to the exceptionally high computational power, up to 60 frames per second can be generated so that even very fast changes are displayed in a completely seamless flow without any artifacts – an essential requirement for reflecting the specific driving dynamics of a sports car.

In addition, the available computer power is used for the three-dimensional display of objects on the monitor. The most striking visual effect results from the complex, spatial graphics of the round gages, including shadows, so that they appear to be almost real. The graphics module (VCM – visual computing module) has been especially modified for use in the car.

One special design feature is the display shape with the cropped corners corresponding to the installation space planned for the new Audit TT and a complex housing molded to match. The instrument cluster is connected via CAN (controller area network) and MOST (media-oriented systems transport) buses.

The innovation in the “Virtual Cockpit” of the new Audi TT also impressed the jury of the “Automotive Interiors Expo Awards 2014”, who awarded it first place in the category “Interior Innovation of the Year – Series Vehicles” in June 2014.

Bosch also supplies radar and video sensors, lambda sensors, gasoline direct injection systems, and fuel pumping modules for the new Audi TT.
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  • November 07, 2014
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Safer and more efficient road travel with Bosch Connectivity Control Units for two-wheelers Connectivity for greater safety and efficiency

  • Bosch at the EICMA 2014 in Milan
  • Connectivity is the basis for a wide variety of different services
  • Rescue control center sends help to riders at the scene of the accident
  • Operating data collected for vehicle servicing
This year’s EICMA (Esposizione Mondiale Del Motociclismo), one of the world’s most important exhibitions for two-wheelers, is the venue at which Bosch will present a Connectivity Control Unit (CCU) for two-wheelers for the first time. This innovative box acts as a communications center that can collect the operating data of individual vehicles and use an automatic emergency call system to deliver important information to rescue workers and call them to the scene of an accident with pinpoint accuracy. Thanks to its connectivity options, the Connectivity Control Unit, which was specially developed by Bosch engineers to meet the needs of two-wheelers, provides the basis for a wide variety of different services that increase safety for two-wheeler riders and can continually monitor the technical condition of the vehicle at the same time.

eCall and bCall functionality for two-wheelers and their riders
After a two-wheeler accident, every second often counts for the accident victims. Immediately after an accident, the new Bosch CCU for two-wheelers makes it possible to transmit an automatic emergency call as it is able to recognize and evaluate critical driving maneuvers on the basis of sensor information from the vehicle and rider as well as with the help of a so-called crash algorithm. The emergency call system activated in this way then automatically transmits such accident-relevant data as place, time and type of vehicle to a rescue control center or service provider – such as Bosch Service Solutions – via eCall. If the connection to the vehicle battery is interrupted, the eCall can also be transmitted by a backup battery. The control center or a service agent establishes a voice connection. If the accident makes it impossible to establish a voice connection to the rider, this information is transmitted to the nearest rescue service. It is also possible to cancel the eCall if no help is required.

In the event of a technical vehicle breakdown, the rider can send a "breakdown call" (bCall) to inform a service center. Thanks to integrated GPS and GSM modules, the Connectivity Control Unit delivers initial information on the scene of the breakdown and on the technical status as well as on any entries in the vehicle’s error memory. The service center can then initiate a repair or breakdown service as stipulated by the two-wheeler manufacturer or establish a voice connection to the rider, advise him or help him with remote diagnosis.

Intelligent connectivity for a wide variety of different services
The Bosch CCU also offers two-wheeler manufacturers an array of other services with different features that can be implemented specific to the manufacturer.

For example, the CCU can accommodate a Remote Service, which can be used in combination with bCall, as well as independently from home or when on the road. This makes it possible to access many different types of information, including the fuel level, tire pressure, oil or coolant temperature, the date of the next servicing or information from the error memory. In addition, such vehicle parameters as driving modes or the ABS mode can be conveniently configured from home.

Based on the location data transmitted, an Information Call makes it possible to obtain driving recommendations to so-called Points of Interest (iCall/POI), which could be the nearest filling station, mechanic or pharmacy, the nearest hospital, a hotel or a shopping center. The data required to reach the selected destination is transmitted to the integrated navigation system via the CCU. And what’s more – service agents can even use this feature to provide such additional services as reserving a hotel room or offering information on local tourist sights.

Other potential applications include Tour Statistics, with which the rider can document individual route information such as driving times, mountain passes and their altitudes or specific curve properties. In the event the two-wheeler is stolen, the Bosch CCU offers a Stolen Vehicle Tracking Service. The Connectivity Control Unit is able to identify an unauthorized change in location and can send a warning message to the service center, indicate the current position of the vehicle and inform the vehicle owner and the police, if desired.

In addition, the CCU is ready for future so-called Vehicle-to-Vehicle Communication (V2V) services and thus for specific Safety Features. V2V communication includes a direct connection between vehicles, whereby the CCU continually transmits information on its own location, driving direction, speed and acceleration. In the future, other vehicles with the corresponding equipment will be able to receive this information and recognize these vehicles in their immediate vicinity. As a result, warnings can be issued early in critical situations, at intersections, for example, or when overtaking – or when a traffic jam ends in a blind bend.

Using the innovative Bosch Connectivity Control Unit can provide valuable help to keep riders safer on the road in the future. In addition, maintenance and repairs can be scheduled as needed based on the data available. As a result, it can be ensured that the two-wheeler will always be in perfect technical condition.
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  • November 03, 2014
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Optimized settings for reducing fuel costs The Fuel Saver App from Bosch SoftTec Bluetooth® adapter for connection to the vehicle

  • Save money when refueling at filling stations in Germany
  • Choose your preferred strategy for refueling
  • Overview of your savings at a glance
  • Available in the Google Play Store for Android smartphones
Drivers using the new Fuel Saver App from Bosch SoftTec GmbH can customize settings to help them to save money when refueling their vehicles at filling stations in Germany. The app offers drivers three different strategies – Thrift Driver, Time Watcher, or Money Collector – to choose from, depending on their own time preferences and money-saving goals. Based on information acquired from the vehicle’s fuel gage, the Fuel Saver App determines which filling station along or near the chosen route has the best price.

Vehicle connection via OBD Bluetooth® adapter
The app can be used in any vehicle which provides fuel gage information via onboard diagnostics (OBD). All that is required is an OBD Bluetooth® adapter (available separately) connected to the vehicle and the Fuel Saver App. The app checks for the vehicle’s compatibility with the OBD interface and activates the Fuel Saver function.

Various driving strategies: Thrift Driver, Time Watcher, Money Collector
The Thrift Driver strategy emphasizes refueling at the lowest cost. However, the Thrift Driver’s willingness to take a detour only for the sake of the best price is not unlimited. So-called Time Watchers would like to save money, but also want to reach their destinations quickly and will accept only a short detour. Saving money is the Money Collectors' overriding priority, so they are prepared to make a more substantial detour to a filling station with lower prices.

Convenient navigation to the chosen filling station
Once the app has located the filling station which best meets the selected criteria, the pre-installed basic navigation of the smartphone is launched. If there are changes in the route or fuel prices, the app, accessing the data of all German filling stations, conducts a search at regular intervals to identify a different filling station. Yet another feature is the calculation of total savings and visualization of the results at a glance so that drivers are given a feeling for how much they have saved on all driven routes.

If drivers want nothing more than an overview of current fuel prices at filling stations in Germany without the attendant calculation of a route, they can use the app’s so-called "Surroundings Radar" showing the available prices.

The Fuel Saver App and additional details are available immediately in the Google Play Store for smartphones running Android 4.0 or later.

Bosch SoftTec GmbH, which was first formed in July 2011, is headquartered in Hildesheim and is a subsidiary of Robert Bosch Car Multimedia GmbH. On the basis of decades of experience in the field of Car Infotainment and automotive software, a small team of specialists at Bosch SoftTec develops new product solutions in the segments for automotive software, connected services, cloud and smartphone applications.

The Bosch Group is a leading global supplier of technology and services. In 2013, its roughly 281,000 associates generated sales of 46.1 billion euros. (NB: Due to a change in accounting policies, the 2013 figures can only be compared to a limited extent with the 2012 figures). Its operations are divided into four business sectors: Mobility Solutions, Industrial Technology, Consumer Goods, and Energy and Building Technology. The Bosch Group comprises Robert Bosch GmbH and its roughly 360 subsidiaries and regional companies in some 50 countries. If its sales and service partners are included, then Bosch is represented in roughly 150 countries. This worldwide development, manufacturing, and sales network is the foundation for further growth. In 2013, the Bosch Group invested some 4.5 billion euros in research and development and applied for some 5,000 patents. This is an average of 20 patents per day. The Bosch Group's products and services are designed to fascinate, and to improve the quality of life by providing solutions which are both innovative and beneficial. In this way, the company offers technology worldwide that is "Invented for life."

Additional information is available online at www.bosch.com and www.bosch-press.com, http://twitter.com/BoschPresse.

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  • October 07, 2014
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Bosch’s technological leap: Display-based instrument cluster Progressive new concept

  • Sophisticated high-performance dual-processor architecture
  • High flexibility when processing content
  • Mineral glass pane over the display exudes quality
The instrument cluster represents a leap in technology, just like the vehicle itself: in the BMW i8, the driver is presented with display-based instrumentation. There are no mechanically moving parts whatsoever, and, thanks to the large monitor, the cluster provides a maximum in flexibility for processing and displaying content. It joins the car on its journey into a future that is increasingly shaped by driver assistance and infotainment systems and associated connectivity capabilities. Such a future therefore requires innovative display and control concepts.

The biggest advantage of a purely display-based instrument cluster is its versatility. It gives designers and developers complete freedom when devising the graphics and layout for the display area, thus leading to unprecedented design possibilities. Almost any conceivable shapes and colors can be utilized for a wide variety of operating states. The monitor furthermore allows specific navigation and online content to be presented to the driver clearly.

When designing the instrument cluster for this plug-in hybrid vehicle, the development engineers settled on a crystal-clear high-contrast TFT display with a diagonal screen size of 8.8 inches. The monitor is positioned in the driver’s field of vision and presents the vehicle’s current speed on the left, while the instrumentation on the right changes depending on which of the i8’s driving modes has been selected.

Encouraging economical driving
In "Comfort" mode, the display shows a power meter on the right that indicates the energy utilization on a dial, including the e-boost from the electric traction motor and the recuperation via the vehicle brakes. "Eco Pro" mode is based on the "Comfort" display but provides a more detailed representation of the transition states between the propulsion technologies, which can encourage the driver to adopt a particularly economical driving style. In both modes the basic dials are displayed in gray and blue tones. In contrast, "Sport" mode presents two red instruments with a rev counter on the right, leaving no doubt of the i8 drive concept’s intrinsic power capabilities. In all modes, the space between the two sets of instruments is used flexibly to display, for example, navigation, radio or telephone information.

Perfect visual feedback
The sophistication of the instrument cluster for the BMW i8 required meticulous development work on the part of the Bosch engineers. An example of this can be seen in the exceptionally fluid motion of the pointers as they move over the dials. Both the hardware and software were carefully selected to guarantee the necessary performance for perfect visual feedback, even for highly dynamic animations.

This instrument cluster furthermore utilizes a highly innovative dual-processor architecture, with one processing unit dedicated to handling the graphics and the other for the remaining functions. A level of computing power was chosen that additionally allows the electronics of a head-up display to be controlled via the instrument cluster. Data connectivity is provided by two bus systems: CAN (Controller Area Network) and MOST (Media Oriented Systems Transport).

The TFT display is covered with an optically bonded pane of mineral glass, just like the latest smartphones and tablet PCs, thus underscoring the cutting-edge design and modern look and feel of this instrument cluster.

For the BMW i8, Bosch also supplies various sensors, a gasoline direct injection system, starter motors, the power electronics for the starter generator, the front wiper system, and electric water pumps.
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  • September 30, 2014
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