At the Consumer Electronics Show 2022 in Las Vegas, the BMW Group unveiled the BMW iX Flow featuring E Ink, a unique vehicle capable of changing its entire body colour at the touch of a button. Delegates at the BMW Group’s rad°hub dialogue platform held at Plant Munich on 12 – 13 May had the opportunity to experience the enhanced colour switching abilities of the BMW iX Flow up close for the first time. The rad°hub event provides a platform for open, interdisciplinary ideas-sharing between visionary thinkers and opinion leaders from around the world.
The BMW iX Flow meets neurotechnology
The Munich-based startup brainboost used the new and improved colour-changing effect in a one-off collaboration with the BMW Group at rad°hub aimed at raising awareness of mental health.
With the help of brainboost, the BMW iX Flow was connected directly to the brain of the rad°hub delegates using an electroencephalograph (EEG), which records the brain’s electrical activity. “The colour patterns of the BMW iX Flow react to brain activity and reflect the level of activity,” explains brainboost CEO Philipp Heiler. “Once the brain is at rest, the changes of patterns on the iX Flow also become calmer and more rhythmical.” A special animation was activated if delegates managed to maintain this state for several seconds. Thus, the participants were able to gradually calm and relax their brains under the guidance of the brainboost experts and with the help of neurofeedback via the iX Flow. This matures the knowledge of which strategies work best to specifically shut down one’s own brain activity for relaxation, e.g. in everyday working life.
What is the technology behind the colour change?
The body of the BMW iX Flow is laminated in a special film containing millions of colour capsules. When stimulated by electrical signals, negatively charged white pigments or positively charged black ones will collect at the surface, thereby changing the exterior colour. By making it possible to alter the body colour and display different patterns, the BMW iX Flow featuring E Ink opens up a whole new way of personalising the driving experience.