Purchasing new hardware? Read our latest product comparisons
ADVERTISEMENT

Palm and Audi collaborate on automotive communications tools

By

August 22, 2005

Image Gallery (2 images)

August 23, 2005 Palm and Audi have announced their collaboration in a new generation of communications solutions designed to improve safety and convenience for drivers: easy and totally integrated hands-free calling inside the car. Using built-in Bluetooth short-range wireless technology and the Palm Treo 650 smartphone, drivers of 2006 Audi A6 and A8 vehicles can make and receive calls totally hands-free using the car's MMI (Multi Media Interface) console, voice-recognition interface or steering-wheel controls.

The Bluetooth integration is a major innovation the two companies are delivering as part of an alliance that includes technology co-development and integrated marketing campaigns that reach the two brands' combined audiences.

"Today people spend more time in their cars than ever before, and mobile phone usage and utility is exploding," said John Hartnett, senior vice president, Americas, at Palm, Inc. "As the convenience of smartphones and wireless access continues to expand worldwide, an important next step was to integrate these technologies into cars in a way that places safety first. Now drivers can keep their eyes on the road and hands on the wheel, while using the Treo 650 to communicate with the outside world."

“Audi and Palm share very similar user demographics and leadership in design, technology and brand loyalty," said Stephen Berkov, director of marketing at Audi of America, Inc. "In light of these similarities, we saw a special opportunity in the intersection of car and phone technologies."

With the Treo 650 smartphone, Audi drivers can take advantage of the Treo 650's advanced calling features without ever touching the smartphone. After initiating Bluetooth communications between the Treo 650 and the car, drivers can use the steering-wheel controls, MMI controls on the dashboard, or the optional voice recognition to do the following:

    Pick up or ignore incoming calls Dial outgoing calls View active call status, including caller ID View the Treo 650's call history Dial from Treo 650 favorites, speed dials, or call logs Access Treo 650 voicemail Manage multiple incoming calls View carrier information, including signal strength and roaming status.

Bluetooth technology comes built-in to the Treo 650 smartphone and is standard in every 2006 Audi A8 and A6, so no extra purchase is required for Treo 650 owners who also own one of these new Audi models. Bluetooth technology also is available on the 2006 Audi A3 and 2006 Audi A4 and S4 sedans and Avants when the vehicles are equipped with the optional phone preparation.

In addition, Audi of America will introduce a special phone cradle that allows the customer to securely dock the Treo 650 smartphone in the central arm rest. The cradle provides a connection to the vehicle's external antenna for optimal reception as well as a power supply that charges the Treo 650 while in the cradle. Customers will be able to purchase the cradle from their local Audi dealer in the next few months.

ADVERTISEMENT
About the Author
Mike Hanlon Mike grew up thinking he would become a mathematician, accidentally started motorcycle racing, got a job writing road tests for a motorcycle magazine while at university, and became a writer. As a travelling photojournalist during his early career, his work was published in a dozen languages across 20+ countries. He went on to edit or manage over 50 print publications, with target audiences ranging from pensioners to plumbers, many different sports, many car and motorcycle magazines, with many more in the fields of communication - narrow subject magazines on topics such as advertising, marketing, visual communications, design, presentation and direct marketing. Then came the internet and Mike managed internet projects for Australia's largest multimedia company, Telstra.com.au (Australia's largest Telco), Seek.com.au (Australia's largest employment site), top100.com.au, hitwise.com, and a dozen other internet start-ups before founding Gizmag in 2002. Now he writes and thinks. All articles by Mike Hanlon
Tags
Post a Comment

Login with your Gizmag account:

Related Articles
Looking for something? Search our articles
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT