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How Mitsubishi Electric Automotive America Paves the Way for Innovation

"We need to support cutting-edge software, hardware, and features. That's easy with a platform as flexible and stable as QNX."
— Grygorii Maistrenko, principal platform engineer, Filament Labs

Mitsubishi Electric Automotive America has always sought to broaden the horizons of what's possible.

And Mitsubishi Electric’s innovation group, Filament Labs, has proven instrumental in that regard. Established to fulfill the need for advanced in-vehicle features and technology, Filament Labs creates everything from state-of-the-art infotainment systems to in-cabin sensing and autonomous driving. 

“Our whole concept is to live outside the box and create the most innovative ideas and technologies,” explains Sana Jafri, UX designer and information architect at Filament Labs. “We focus a lot on research, and we're always on the hunt for the latest technology. That means we need to be very flexible and stay ahead of the curve — both of what's available and what's to come."

To that end, Filament Labs leverages QNX® Hypervisor.

25% Reduced Development Time

Safety & Data Security Via the QNX Hypervisor

Out-of-the-Box Support for New Hardware and Systems

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Staying Ahead of the Curve

Staying Ahead of the Curve

"At first, we worked purely in the infotainment domain," says Michael Horani, director of Filament Labs. “That grew later to incorporate other subsystems such as clusters and rear-seat entertainment. Now, we’re looking at fully connected, software-defined vehicles, along with artificial intelligence and machine learning. Our mission evolved to staying current, or sometimes ahead of, changes and trends — predicting what we can, and adapting to anything we cannot predict." 

Charting a Roadmap to the Future

Most of the team at Filament Labs were already aware of BlackBerry® QNX® solutions. They knew that it would allow them to easily keep pace with new and emerging technology. This, in turn, would ensure they could continue doing what they do best — redefining the in-car experience. 

“What’s great about BlackBerry QNX is that it’s very cross-functional,” says Filament Labs Software Engineer John Derkhez. “It’s easy to get things up and running on a new system. And with the QNX Hypervisor, we get a bunch of extra security. We can run a GUI-focused OS on top of the QNX RTOS, and keep all safety-critical data and features walled off.” 

“That’s a big draw for a lot of OEMs, especially as Internet connectivity in vehicles becomes more common,” he adds. 

Seamless Integration for Uninterrupted Operation

Seamless Integration for Uninterrupted Operation

Every year, Filament Labs builds a concept car to demonstrate its capabilities to suppliers and OEMs. It could not afford to interrupt that process to deploy a new software platform. Fortunately, that was a non-issue with QNX. 

"We have a relatively small team, so when we make a decision to switch to another operating system, it usually involves a lot of work," explains Maistrenko.  “That wasn’t the case here. The same year we deployed it, we delivered a new vehicle as if nothing happened. Deploying QNX was as easy as sending an email."  

“As a designer, when we jumped to BlackBerry QNX, I could not feel a difference,” adds Jafri. “QNX was suddenly just there. It just existed and by existing made everything simpler and more seamless; we could do whatever we wanted with it.”

A Foundation for Bigger and Better Things

BlackBerry QNX provided Filament Labs with exactly what it needed — the agility and flexibility to continue innovating. Because some OEMs prefer to work with QNX, Filament Labs’ expertise with the platform has become a selling point, as well.  

“We want to continue using BlackBerry QNX in our projects,” Maistrenko concludes. “Because of the convenience, because of the performance, because of the support team, because of the flexibility, reliability, robustness, and everything else that QNX already has. It provides everything we need.”

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Automotive Technology


United States/Global