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A new smart car from Byton has been grabbing the headlines at this year’s CES show at Las Vegas.

 

Is the age of the smart car dawning?

Byton, a new car designed by ex Apple and BMW employees, and backed by Chinese investors, has been turning heads at the CES.

Boasting a touch display that stretches the length of the car’s front screen, Byton talks about the car offering a digital lounge.  The company describes the car as offering a shared experience display, and human-vehicle interaction, including voice recognition, touch control, biometric identification and necessary physical buttons, plus proprietary air touch sensors, enabling front and rear passengers to control the shared experience display with hand gestures.

The BBC quoted Jeff Chung, head of Byton’s Intelligent Car Experience division as saying: “What we want to try to do is merge your life outside of the car with your experience inside the car.”

But isn’t that the point of autonomous cars? There is something almost intimate about the relationship between a car and its driver. The driver and machine in harmony.

But if we don’t drive, does our car not take on a different meaning, and not just a way to move from A to B?

We all have smartphones, but making phone calls from these devices may be a secondary purpose.

Maybe it will be like that with autonomous cars – they may become mobile lounges, or studies, boardrooms, or even dining rooms. Maybe reaching a destination will become one benefit, another might be that instead of traveling to a meeting, the meeting will travel to you.