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Though we've known Chrysler has been planning to offer in-car internet connectivity on its 2009 models as an option through Mopar for a few months now, the Auburn Hills-based automaker has now given it an official name and bundled the technology with a suite of in-car tech solutions. Called uconnect web, the in-car wi-fi capability will be offered alongside other technologies called uconnect phone, uconnect tunes, uconnect gps and uconnect studios. uconnect phone is basically bluetooth compatibility that enables hands-free calling, stores your cell phone's address book and also records memos. uconnect tunes includes a 30GB hard drive for storing songs and viewing photos, and also allows playback of movies on the dashboard screen while in Park (no word on whether video can be stored on the in-dash hard drive and played back, though). uconnect gps is a touchscreen navigation system with voice recognition, and uconnect studios is Chrysler's offering of SIRIUS Backseat TV. The latter technologies are all well known and familiar, so it's understandable that everyone's going ga ga over Chrysler's promise of in-car wi-fi. We're currently checking with the automaker to find out what type of hardware the system will use, whether or not a cell phone carrier will be involved and what type of coverage area will be available. Stay tuned.
[Source: Chrysler]


Chrysler LLC Launches Umbrella "uconnect" Name for Connectivity Technologies

Auburn Hills, Mich., Jun 26, 2008 -
Today's consumers are passionate about staying in touch and want to be connected no matter where they are – home, work, school or vehicle. To focus on the experience and connect customers to the things that matter the most, Chrysler LLC will now bundle innovative consumer technologies under one umbrella name – "uconnect." The function of the feature is directly in the name – uconnect phone, uconnect tunes, uconnect gps, uconnect studios and uconnect web.

"We set out to connect customers to the things that matter most to them," said Deborah Meyer, Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer – Chrysler LLC. "The role for 'uconnect' in the 2009 model year places the focus on the customer experience and how the features will make their life easier."

Following are the definitions of the uconnect features.

uconnect phone
What it does: Uses Bluetooth® technology to provide voice-controlled wireless communication between the occupants' compatible mobile phones and the vehicle's onboard receiver. New for 2009, the hands-free system automatically downloads up to 1,000 phone book entries from supported phones. The system also recognizes three languages, and is capable of learning. Voice commands can manage onboard phone book entries, select radio stations and access voice mail. Voice memos can be recorded using the microphone that's integrated within the rearview mirror. Three memos of up to thirty seconds each can be stored in the system. The hands-free option promotes safety, freedom, value and flexibility.
Availability: Chrysler 300, Aspen, PT Cruiser, Sebring and Town & Country; Dodge Avenger, Grand Caravan, Caliber, Challenger, Charger, Dakota, Durango, Journey, Nitro, and Ram; Jeep® Grand Cherokee, Commander, Compass, Liberty and Patriot

Part of uconnect phone on select Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge vehicles is an iPod interface, which allows an iPod to be plugged into the vehicle's sound system to play music through the vehicle's speakers, charge/recharge the iPod when the ignition is on, display artists and music choices on the radio and pause play when uconnect phone receives a phone call. The iPod can be controlled through the radio controls and the remote steering wheel switches (if equipped). The system uses a Universal Customer Interface (UCI) connector located either in the glove box or in the center console, depending on vehicle model.

uconnect tunes
What it does: uconnect tunes includes the following features for music, movie and personalized picture display:
A 30-gigabyte hard drive for ripping up to 6,700 songs from CD or USB memory devices in compressed format (either MP3, AAC or WMA file formats)
Photos can be loaded onto the hard drive, allowing the customer to personalize the home screen
Movies can be displayed on the screen for entertaining passengers when the vehicle is in Park (as permitted by the state regulations)
Availability: Chrysler 300, Aspen, Sebring and Town & Country; Dodge Avenger, Caliber, Grand Caravan, Challenger, Charger, Journey, Nitro and Ram 1500; Jeep Commander, Compass, Grand Cherokee, Liberty and Patriot

uconnect gps
What it does: uconnect gps combines the features of uconnect phone and uconnect tunes with navigation and real-time traffic. The system includes an integrated voice recognition system and touch screen for easy operation. The voice recognition system also recognizes more than 100,000 words and can input addresses, which allows the customer to enter destinations while the vehicle is in motion.
Availability: Chrysler 300, Aspen, Sebring and Town & Country; Dodge Avenger, Caliber, Grand Caravan, Challenger, Charger, Journey, Nitro and Ram; Jeep Commander, Compass, Grand Cherokee, Liberty and Patriot

uconnect studios
What it does: uconnect studios offer optional SIRIUS Backseat TV™, featuring three channels of family TV programming, and optional SIRIUS Satellite Radio, with more than 130 channels of the best music, entertainment and information coast to coast. The systems can be bundled or opted for independently depending upon model availability, and either can be operated from the rear-seat entertainment unit or from the radio head unit.

Chrysler's uconnect studios offer optional SIRIUS Satellite Radio which provides more than 130 channels, including 69 channels of 100 percent commercial-free music, plus sports, news, talk and entertainment. Station selection with the radio is easy, using the same familiar method as choosing an AM or FM station. Consumers are able to scan channels or have preset buttons for their favorite channels. They can also search both by music category and channel, which is displayed on the radio screen
Availability: SIRIUS Satellite Radio is available on all Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge vehicles

Chrysler's uconnect studios offer optional SIRIUS Backseat TV which features three channels of family TV programming: Nickelodeon, Disney Channel and Cartoon Network. SIRIUS Backseat TV operates via an in-vehicle satellite video receiver and two small roof-mounted antennas. Programming is displayed on the vehicle's second- and/or third-row video screens, and channel name, program title and rating is broadcasted and displayed on the screen. In addition, when the vehicle is in Park, programming can be displayed on the uconnect tunes or uconnect gps screen for front-seat viewing (as permitted by state regulations). New for 2009 in the Chrysler Town & Country and Dodge Grand Caravan are larger nine-inch rear-seat video screens that swivel
Availability: Chrysler 300, Aspen and Town & Country; Dodge Grand Caravan, Charger, Durango, Journey and Ram 1500; Jeep Commander and Grand Cherokee

uconnect web
What it does: The system will provide high-speed data transfer and flexibility, combining WiFi and cellular connectivity for a new level of wireless technology. The system transforms the vehicle into a "hot spot" to deliver the Internet directly to the vehicle, for instant access to Web sites, e-mail, personalized music, online gaming, photo albums, and more.
Availability: Chrysler plans to offer aftermarket in-vehicle "hot-spot" wireless Internet capability through Mopar® for Chrysler, Dodge and Jeep vehicles.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 6 Years Ago
      I wish Cerberus-Chrysler well because we're all better off with more choices among cars. But no cutesy hi-tech fluff will compensate for cars like the Sebring/Avenger that are not worth buying unless discounted to ultimate cheapness.

      Who buys a Sebring/Avenger other than a rental car company looking for bargain-priced iron?

      I'd rather have an Accord, Camry, Altima, Aura or Malibu because those cars are inherently better. No superficial goodies can turn Chrysler's (Mercedes') mistakes into desirable cars.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I would love to surf the net while girlfriend is driving. :)
      • 6 Years Ago

      I thought Chrysler's problem was making cars that people want to buy. Well I guess features like uconnect web will raise the desirability of the Sebring,Avenger, Compass etc.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Why not just call it "in-car internet"? Do we really need stupid names like this to sell a product?
        • 6 Years Ago
        Chrysler thinks so, god knows they can't sell based on product integrity alone.
        • 6 Years Ago
        In order to do that they'd have to have integrity to begin with...
      • 6 Years Ago
      i can just picture it now that some idiot will use to wifi to go online and check on up coming traffic, only to see their own car on the new~
      oh the other hand, they can file their claim on the spot online while being towed away haha
      • 6 Years Ago

      I agree, it's a dumb name.

      Paying for a personal AND a car "cell" phone connection is dumb also.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Dear Chrysler,

      ucannot come up with a better name than this?
        • 6 Years Ago
        what a bad name! Hey not for nothing, Ford renamed "Twin Force" to "Eco Boost".... If anything it should have been "Twin Force with Eco Boost" or flip it!

        • 6 Years Ago
        Agree eleventy BILLION percent.

        What a horrible name.
      • 6 Years Ago
      So will they sell unlimited access for $2.99 a month? Can you trade internet access for gas credits?
      • 6 Years Ago
      This system is going to be hacked so fast and hard, I can't wait to see what happens.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Uconnect has been arround for years, refering to the web,gps etc could be confusing for customers and I am sure while in motion you will not be able to surf autoblog.com

      • 6 Years Ago
      OH GREAT! Another way to distract drivers.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Wireless (cellphones, PDA's) data in Canada is terribly expensive, around 12$ per MB. I wonder how they will do subscription fee's. It's something I personally would like but getting a Rogers WiMax modem for $54.99/month and just hook it up in the car AND be able to use it at home would be far less expensive. Not for the novice installer, and it's not like I'd want to surf while firing down the 401 *laughs*
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