The merging of our smart phones and automotive infotainment systems may be about to get an even bigger boost, if a report from Forbes is to be believed. The business publication is reporting that Google and Audi may announce a partnership at next week's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas that would see Google's Android OS taking control of Audi's MMI infotainment system.
To help its customers through the nightmare of finding urban parking spots, Audi has rolled out Inrix Park services as a standard no-cost feature bundled into its subscriber-based Audi Connect services. Accessed through the automaker's MMI navigation system, Inrix provides a way to check space availability, garage hours, compare rates and gauge proximity to more than 18,000 participating parking locations in the US.
More tech in your car? Oh, that's inevitable. But automakers are trying to figure out the best way to implement it. There are two main architectures currently; tethered and embedded. Ford's SYNC is an example of a tethered tech-integration system that uses Bluetooth to connect to mobile devices consumers already own and carry with them. General Motors' OnStar system is an embedded setup that builds the technology into the car. Going forward, the consensus seems to be that we're going to see syst
Audi's MMI in-car command system is one of the most intuitive offered by an OEM, but that isn't stopping Audi from piling on the improvements. The screen is now a seven-inch, 800x400 TFT display, being fed info from a high-capacity hard disk, a DVD drive, and an NVIDIA graphics chip. It also gets an eight-way joystick on the central knob, which means you can make mouse-like movements on the screen for point-and-click ease. In addition to all that, there are simpler vocal inputs, 3-D maps, a 10,0
If you're buying an A8 this year, prepare to spend a lot of time getting to know your new MMI system. We have consistently thought that Audi's buttons-and-knob interface is the best, and it looks like they've put an entire NASA team on the job of making it better. A seven-inch TFT screen with 800x400 resolution is now controlled by an 8-position joystick. Moving from one screen to another is done via "elegant crossfades," which sounds a bit PowerPoint-ish, but we'll wait until we see it to judge
We've already gotten a sneak peak of what the 2009 BMW 7-series will look like on the outside ahead of its official launch, but the interior – and iDrive in particular – is still veiled in a cloak of secrecy. However, Bimmerfile has supposedly gotten the inside dope on the new multi-function brushed aluminum mole.
Although the supersized Audi A6L has offered buyers more backseat legroom and luxury compared to the standard A6, there seemed to be something missing. Extra room is nice, but what's a young executive to do back there? These lengthened sedans are becoming very popular in China, and with the new features Audi just showed at the Shanghai Auto Show, we understand why the demand will most likely continue to grow. Audi is showing off a few extra gizmos designed to help pass the time on those 20-hour,