Automakers have been doing some amazing things with augmented reality. Land Rover has found a way to use camera systems to create a transparent car, something that is extremely handy when trying to negotiate tough off-road trails. The envelope keeps being pushed, and we have seen massive improvements with features such as head-up displays (HUDs).
HUDs currently have the ability to project important information such as speed, radio stations, and navigation prompts on the windshield so the driver doesn't have to take their eyes off the road. This technology is very useful, but could become even better in the near future. Porsche has just invested in a Swiss start-up called WayRay, and we are already excited for what may come from this investment.
WayRay produces holographic augmented reality HUD technology that can integrate virtual objects onto the windshield. Instead of just having a few basic readouts on a tiny part of the windshield, WayRay's system can project a massive image across the length of the car.
In a press release, Porsche showed off how the technology could be used, with readouts such as a racing line, lap timer, speed, gear position, and parking information all projected on the screen. The system looks like a Forza Motorsports video game has been brought to life, and we can't wait to see it arrive on Porsche cars in the future.
Unlike most HUDs, WayRay's system can be seen by both the driver and passenger and can be installed into almost any car thanks to the compact size of the projector. WayRay is now in its Series C funding round, where it will be raising $80 million thanks to investments from Porsche, Hyundai, and other investors. We think this technology has important applications in the automotive industry and we won't be surprised if WayRay reaches its goal of becoming a billion dollar company.