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TME was interested in the possibilities of developing and improving its current soundscape for their car interiors and therefore chose to work with the TUD’s Product Sound Design Group. The focus of this project lied on investigating, understanding and designing functional sounds for the vehicle interior space. Furthermore, the aim was to develop sound concepts that enrich the user experience in the aspects of functionality and pleasantness and also to create a stronger impact on the perception of brand value.

Therefore, sound concepts were developed to form a possible foundation for an advanced system for auditory interfaces, which intended to not only exceed the currently existing audio signals in aesthetic qualities but also implement distinctive semantic meanings. The user should be able to recognize and link the specific semantic associations to relating information and functions in the vehicle system.

Such developments were motivated not only by improving general safety through the application of current technological possibilities combined with empirical insights on human perception but also by the clients’ desire to enhance the entire user experience as much as possible. Several interdisciplinary design methods could be applied to gain deeper insights into the context of auditory interface design. The design strategy was to combine different approaches from forming a clear notion of the brand qualities to finding metaphorical associations for the functions and mapping them into an audible design concept.

The concept sounds were further developed while considering various aspects of psychological and physiological processing in human auditory perception, emotional processing sounds, and cognitive associations that the occurring sounds had.

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