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Continental Driver Identification Display: facial recognition

The Driver Identification Display from Continental promises increased comfort and safety thanks to facial recognition. You still need the car key.

Start the engine of the car by turning the key? Fewer and fewer people are doing that. It is now more common to keep the car key (or alternatively the smartphone that serves as such or the key card) in your pocket or purse and drive off after pressing a start button. Keyless-Go makes it possible - but these systems are considered questionable from a security perspective. It has been proven more than once in tests that many cars with keyless go are easy to crack. But that could be a thing of the past by 2025 at the latest - thanks to an innovation from Continental.

The supplier already presented the "Driver Identification Display" at the CES in Las Vegas in early January, which it developed together with its partner, the optics and biometrics specialist Trinamix. Continental and the subsidiary of the chemical group BASF have now published further details on this driver identification display, which combines camera and display technologies and, thanks to biometric driver recognition, is said to raise anti-theft security to a new level.

Camera with skin detection

The system is based on an invisible camera that is placed in the driver information display behind the steering wheel. In addition, there is the so-called live detection from Trinamix, which can recognize human skin on the basis of biometric factors. The patent-protected technology is intended to prevent deception – for example through photos or three-dimensional masks. "This two-factor authentication differs from other facial recognition systems that are already on the market," says a spokeswoman for Continental. The brands Genesis (see photo show) and Ora, which belongs to the Chinese Great Wall group , already offer such functions in selected models in series.

The group calls its "Driver Identification Display" the "world's first automotive display in the vehicle interior that enables contactless, highly secure authentication and protects against fraud and theft". However, this is only the short-term core competence of the system. It should be possible to implement further use cases in the future. For example, to authenticate digital payment transactions via the car display, to gain access to digital services or to monitor the driver's attention.

Series use in two years

In 2025 the "Driver Identification Display" is to be introduced in series cars. Continental has not yet revealed which manufacturers want to install it in their cars. But one thing is clear: the car key in physical or digital form on the smartphone or as a key card is not yet obsolete. The "Driver Identification Display" has so far only been an interior solution; you can't unlock or lock it. Just drive off, pay or let yourself be monitored.


In 2025, Continental will launch the "Driver Identification Display", a system that will enable contactless and convenient authentication and protect against fraud and theft of the vehicle. In the future, further functions such as authorization of payment transactions, access to digital services or driver monitoring are possible.


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