The infotainment systems in vehicles today are a lot more advanced than what we had years ago. From simply playing music via an aux cord or Bluetooth, most of the newer systems are also connected to the internet. Some brands, like BMW and Mercedes-Benz, even have an in-car, voice-activated assistant.
But for some reason Ford wants to display billboard ads inside the vehicle through the infotainment system.
Ford recently filed a patent with the US Patent and Trademark Office for what is technically a billboard detector. The system can read billboards as you drive through the roads and then displays them onto the infotainment system. Let's be honest: we don't pay attention to billboard when we're driving at speed because our eyes should be on the road at all times. At the very least, we get a small glimpse and forget about them afterward. So we don't miss it, Ford's billboard detector will display it on our screens.
According to the patent, the system works by using external cameras to detect billboards. The cameras will then process information and project details of the billboard onto the screen of your car. The patent doesn't go into much detail but do remember exterior cameras are now becoming standard equipment in newer models. Specifically, you can see them in vehicles with some form of autonomous driving.
There's no need to worry (yet) about having in-car ads in Ford models because the idea is still just a patent. Well, that is for the time being. This also means Ford may or may not decide to put it into production. Besides, there's no way a pop-up ad won't be distracting to drivers. Assuming Ford puts it into production, the automaker could also offer a subscription for an “ad-free experience” similar to a Spotify Premium account.
Whatever the case may be, we can easily say this is one kind of tech we won't ever see in any car. Imagine driving with ads randomly popping up on the infotainment screen.