Toyota and Microsoft Develop Driver Gesture Recognition System

The new tech could be used for infotainment systems

Japanese carmaker Toyota and Redmond-based technology titan Microsoft are working together on a brand new technology that could bring a driver gesture recognition system in millions of cars.

The new device won’t be developed to control the car, but to access specific features of the infotainment system, navigation, climate options or cellphone calls, Jim Lentz, Toyota US chief, explained.

Supposed to reduce driver distraction, the technology is still in early development stages, so the project currently comes down to an electric skateboard connected to a Windows 8 tablet and a Kinect sensor.

Whenever the rider raises or lowers the hand, the skateboard increases or decreases speed, but further gestures should be supported anytime soon.

“Imagine a dashboard where there are no buttons to push… no screens to tap… and your eyes can remain focused on the road. That’s exactly what Toyota is working on,” Lentz was quoted as saying by ExtremeTech.

“This could potentially work in conjunction with voice recognition which sometimes can be hindered by accents or mispronunciations. Hand gestures are pretty universal.”

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