Offering a look at future interior trends, BMW will reveal its new HoloActive Touch system at the upcoming Consumer Electronics Show in January. Providing just a quick glimpse, BMW says this new human-machine interface functions like a virtual touchscreen and permits control inputs to be made without any physical contact.

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Part of the BMW i Inside Future Study, HoloActive Touch blends the advantages of BMW Head-Up Display, BMW gesture control and direct touchscreen operation. The automaker says the interface acts like a free-floating holographic display that relies on finger gesture inputs which are then confirmed as “perceived tactile feedback.” In addition to performing conventional control functions, the system is designed to allow users to fully access the complete suite of available BMW Connected Services.

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BMW says its full-color HoloActive Touch display is created much like a Head-Up Display using a series of focused reflections. But here, instead of being projected on the windshield, the display appears to float in a space adjacent to the steering wheel and just above the center console. The system also includes a camera that precisely monitors the driver’s hand motions. When it senses a finger has made contact with one of the “flexibly configurable control pads” that are present in the virtual display area, it triggers an appropriate response.

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