Neptune 3 UI - Overview
Neptune 3 UI intends to:
- Provide best practices for developing an automotive UI using Qt Automotive Suite.
- Get UI designers and software developers to work together.
- Provide UI designers methods for controlling the UI look-and-feel.
- Improve flexibility by allowing integration Qt Automotive Suite with external tools (e.g. 3D tools, maps, Qt IVI).
- Provide a multi-process UI that forms a base for an IVI system.
Neptune 3 UI key features are:
- Neptune 3 UI is implemented with Qt / QML. Implementation is based on Qt Application Manager that takes care of the application and window management.
- Neptune 3 UI can be integrated with various car 3D model technologies.
- Neptune 3 UI can be integrated with various navigation solutions.
- Neptune 3 UI utilizes the Qt IVI module that provides C++ classes and QML types for accessing vehicle features, as well as core API for implementing new IVI features.
In order to provide support for multi-process architecture, Neptune 3 UI is made up from the following elements:
|Neptune 3 UI element||Description|
|System UI (||Such as climate panel, notification center, application launcher, status bar, etc.|
|Applications (||A container for different applications used within the system UI.|
|Imports, modules (e.g. ||Modules, assets, and controls required for visual appearance and functionalities both for a system UI and an application.|
|Plugins||QML plugins required for communication with low level services.|
|Styles||UI styles and configurations.|
Neptune 3 UI contains several built-in (pre-installed) applications:
|Neptune 3 Applications||Description|
|Vehicle Application (||Show a 3D visualization of the car with its common settings and information, e.g. vehicle settings, energy information, doors and tires.|
|Music Application (||Media application that can play the music that is indexed by the Qt IVI using Qt Multimedia backend.|
|Map Application (||Map application is created using MapBoxGL plugin from Qt Location having some common navigation features, e.g. set destination, show current location, show direction to home or work from current location. The Map application also support offline map view.|
|Calendar Application (||An organizer application with some dummy data showing set of appointments, current-year calendar and dummy weather forecast with mockup data. There is no real backend yet for this application.|
|Phone Application (||Phone application with dummy contact list which can be simulated. There is no real backend yet for this application.|
|Tuner Application (||Media application that have pre-set of station list which are provided by the simulation backend from Qt IVI.|
|Application Store (||Allows the user to install applications from Neptune Deployment Store to Neptune 3. There are few applications available, e.g. Spotify, Netflix, Web Radio App, Same Game. User can also uninstall these external installed apps using the Application Store.|
|General Settings (||General Settings provides a set of common UI settings, such as language settings, theme settings, date and time settings, as well as color settings.|
The Neptune 3 UI visual concept includes different UI elements:
In the Instrument Cluster, the user can find driving related information like the speed, cruise control parameters, gear and energy use (for an electric car). Users can also have information from the selected application-windows (Music or Navigation ordered in views which you can navigate between. In order to switch between available application-window, the user can use the remote settings server of Neptune 3 UI or a physical keyboard and press CTRL + c. The size and position of gauges and other driving related information is flexible making space for views, like Navigation, that requires more space.
The Center Stack display is designed to show the multiprocess capabilities; the fact that we can run several applications at the same time with quick response and smooth transitions. Even if we technically have different applications running on separate processes, the intention is to fade out the border between them, and between them and the System UI, giving the user a perception that it is one unified system.
In addition to traditional applications, like Music Player, Phone and Navigation, the Center Stack display also contains climate settings, system notifications and different vehicle information and settings.
Some applications, like Music Player, can go both as fullscreen and as widgets. The widgets are the actual applications, just running in a smaller window and adapting their content to fit in a widget slot. The widgets are used on the customizable Home view.
When an application is shown in maximized state, it will take over the whole part of the Center Stack and show the full content of the application as illustrated in the following image:
The Application Launcher can be expanded by tapping on the grid icon on the upper end of the screen. Users can choose which application to be maximized by tapping on the application icon. Users can also define four top applications to be shown without expanding the launcher by pressing-and-hold the selected application and drag it to the desired position as illustrated in the following image:
By default, the center stack display shows three application widgets. User can choose which application to be shown on the home screen as widget by tapping on the Add-Widget icon below the lowest widget and choose the desired application. Only application that is specified to have a widget-option will be listed there. The user can also remove a widget from the home screen by tapping on the X icon at the bottom left corner of the widget.
Note: removing an application widget does not mean that the application is killed. The application will be still running on the background. See Neptune 3 UI System Dialog for more information about killing an application.
Neptune 3 UI has a Climate Bar located at the bottom of the Center Stack Display. When tapping into it, a Climate Panel will be shown up with some simulation data interface to Qt IVI as shown in the following image:
Neptune 3 UI has a Notification Center to store Notifications that are triggered in Neptune 3 UI. When a notification is triggered, a Notification Toast will be shown first and it will be stored in the Notification Center afterwards. The User can remove each notification in the Notification Center or clear the Notification Center.
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