Ford's Sync makes it easy to bring music or other materials into cars and trucks, then manages the content using voice commands. Microsoft got most of the attention when Ford touted voice control as a way to reduce driver distraction while still letting drivers do many tasks. But there's also hardware in the radio head end. Freescale's 400 MHz version i.MX31 multimedia applications processor provides the USB connectivity while also handling tasks such as running the Microsoft operating system, performing audio signal processing for hands-free phone operation and processing voice recognition software.
BMW has already incorporated more than 10,000 3D-printed parts in the Rolls-Royce Phantom and intends to expand the use of 3D printing in its cars even more in the future. Meanwhile, Daimler has started using additive manufacturing for producing spare parts in Mercedes-Benz Trucks.
Researchers have been developing a number of nano- and micro-scale technologies that can be used for implantable medical technology for the treatment of disease, diagnostics, prevention, and other health-related applications.
SABIC's lightweighting polycarbonate glazing materials have appeared for the first time in a production car: the rear quarter window of Toyota's special edition 86 GRMN sports car, where they're saving 50% of its weight compared to conventional glass.
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