Ahead of CES, Mercedes-Benz unveiled its enormous Hyperscreen. It’s a 56-inch curved touchscreen that takes up almost the entire width of a car dashboard, soon to debut in the company’s EQS electric sedan, coming later this year.
Equipped with an OLED screen and voice-controlled MBUX (Mercedes-Benz user experience) software that learns and adapts to driver behavior, the Hyperscreen is an optional addition to the company’s forthcoming electric vehicles. It’s like a digital assistant that makes suggestions for vehicle functions and entertainment choices using artificial intelligence.
“It’s based on customer need,” said Mercedes-Benz AG executive Sajjad Khan on a Thursday press call.
Up to seven profiles can be added to the system, each with its own customized settings. But it’s not just the driver that benefits from this sprawling screen; the front passenger gets their own display screen to control music, car temperature, and so on. This becomes a decorative display showing animated stars if the seat is empty. Entertainment options in the passenger display are only available if it’s legal in the country you’re driving in.
“The MBUX Hyperscreen is both the brain and nervous system of the car,” Khan said in a press statement. “The MBUX Hyperscreen continually gets to know the customer better and delivers a tailored, personalized infotainment and operating offering before the occupant even has to click or scroll anywhere.”
Mercedes is calling this intuitive feature the “zero layer.” Khan explained that the car suggests features before you have to click anything. So if you always turn the heat up on Monday mornings or call your best friend from the car at a certain time, the climate control will start warming up and the phone icon with your friend’s number queued up will appear on the screen for your weekly call.
Khan described it as the opposite of opening apps on a smartphone. “You click an icon and get lost in the application,” he said about handsets. Instead, the zero layers bring the app to you, so you don’t have to click through while driving.
Set within a blue and orange theme, the Hyperscreen’s OLED technology intensifies colors, deepens black hues, and increases contrast when viewed from multiple angles. The whole screen, made of scratch-resistant aluminum silicate, features 12 actuators underneath the screen for haptic feedback (touch technology through vibrations) and the screen has been coated to make for easier cleaning and reduced reflections.
The screen incorporates eight CPU cores and 24 gigabytes of RAM, as well as a multifunction camera and light sensor to analyze elements like screen brightness. The Hyperscreen includes an EV mode display, to show functions like energy-boosting and recuperation.
Khan assured that Hyperscreen takes into account the battery range and energy needed to arrive at your destination so that the screen doesn’t drain the car.
The screen also features real, non-digital air vents.
The Hyperscreen is set to debut in the company’s EQS EV, coming sometime in 2021. Later this month, Mercedes’ next EV, the SUV-sized EQA, will be officially revealed.
Additional reporting by Sasha Lekach.