Designing Tomorrow’s Human-Machine Interfaces in Autonomous Vehicles: An Exploratory Study in Virtual Reality
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Technical advances in the automotive industry strive in the direction of full automation. However, besides advantages like improving traffic and fuel efficiency, people do not always trust Autonomous Vehicles (AVs) to make critical decisions. With the ultimate goal of reducing anxiety of passengers of AVs, this explorative study (i) proposes possible design concepts and variants for Human-Machine Interfaces (HMI) for passengers inside the AV using a requirements catalogue, (ii) evaluates the HMI concepts and variants thanks to an experience simulation in Virtual Reality (VR), and (iii) derives the most suitable HMI concept and refines it based on observations of participants’ behaviours during the experience simulation in VR, as well as questionnaires and interviews. The results show that the HMI concepts help passengers to reduce anxiety in the AV. Overall, VR turned out to be a suitable tool for this exploratory study. Further work will focus on testing HMI concepts in a variety of more complex scenarios to ensure user acceptance.
KeywordsHuman-Machine interfaces Virtual reality Autonomous mobility Experience simulation originality
This study is based on a master’s thesis (Huang, 2018) and is part of a research programme, TUMCREATE Phase 2, funded by the National Research Foundation (NRF) Singapore under its Campus for Research Excellence and Technological Enterprise (CREATE) programme. The experiment was approved by the Institutional Review Board (IRB) of Nanyang Technological University of Singapore, No. 2018-06-048.
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