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Nuance introduces biometric auto spin-off Cerence as new technologies reach market


Nuance has announced its upcoming automotive industry spin-off will be called Cerence, Inc., and that the new brand will be launched on October 1, 2019 to provide biometrics and other software to connect drivers, vehicles, and the world.

The name of the new independent, publicly-traded company is an invented word, meant to invoke intelligence, experience, serenity, and control, according to the announcement. The new logo is inspired by the right and left sides of the human brain, while the typography is intended to signify fluidity and forward movement.

“We are excited to unveil Cerence, an elegant, modern name and fresh start for a company and brand that will grow to represent the many ways we bring solutions to market,” said Richard Mack, senior vice president of Corporate Marketing and Communications at Nuance and future Chief Marketing and Communications Officer at Cerence. “We believe Cerence exudes the right balance of strength, elegance, confidence and control, and we look forward to bringing to this brand to life.”

Cerence software will sense voice, touch, gesture, emotion, and gaze, and currently powers artificial intelligence systems in more than 280 million cars globally, in more than 40 languages, for nearly every major automaker, including Audi, BMW, Daimler, Ford, Geely, GM, SAIC, and Toyota.

Several other companies have also announced biometric innovations in the auto market.

Biometric investment services

TD Ameritrade has launched a voice-biometrics and artificial intelligence-powered in-car investment service, Bank Innovation reports. Drivers will not be able to make trades, but will have access to a series of digital tools for portfolio management from mobile device interfaces on dashboard screens.

“By integrating access to financial markets and financial education across the various modalities and leveraging technologies like AI and machine learning, voice and audio, our customers can engage in a way that makes this experience more intuitive and more natural,” says Sunayna Tuteja, head of digital assets at TD Ameritrade.

In-car commerce is a potential $230 billion market, according to a recent PYMNTS Digital Drive report.

TD Ameritrade plans to eventually roll-out trading from the driver’s seat, but wants to make sure of their security first. The new service integrates with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and Echo Auto. CarPlay users can access TD Ameritrade’s network of news and information, while Android Auto and Echo Auto users can also request quotes and portfolio updates with voice commands.

Drowsiness detection

Nissan’s new ProPilot2.0 system uses facial recognition, 3D mapping navigation and other technologies to reduce the risk of accidents with hands-off self-driving cars, Science Times reports.

The system allows drivers to enter and exit highways with automated control, and the Driver Management System (DMS) detects drowsiness. It will be available for vehicles in Japan in 2019, but implementation in the U.S. will depend on more 3D mapping of roadways.

Driver fatigue and distraction

The new 2020 Suburu Outback also features biometric facial recognition for driver distraction mitigation, Boston.com reports. As part of the DrvierFocus system, drivers are monitored with infrared cameras, and issued with visual and audio warnings if fatigue or distraction is detected.

Some models of the new Outback also feature the largest dash display screen ever for a Suburu, making it easier for drivers to use capabilities such as the above services from TD Ameritrade.

Door opening

Chinese carmaker Human Horizons has revealed a production-ready prototype of a new tech-focussed electric SUV with facial recognition door opening, according to news.com.au.

The HiPhi 1 also features advanced connectivity and 562 sensors for autonomous driving. The dash includes an infotainment screen, and the vehicle reportedly has an integrated neural network to control its features.

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