Developed with Fiat and Italian auto-electronics manufacturer Magneti Marelli, the system runs on Microsoft's latest edition of Windows Mobile for Automotive and will initially be offered on Fiat, Lancia and Alfa Romeo vehicles, starting this spring.
As you might expect, the "Blue" in the somewhat awkward product name stands for "Bluetooth," and the system is compatible with a wide range of bluetooth-equipped phones and other devices. A voice-recognition system and steering wheel mounted controls makes operation of the system safe and simple, and no voice system "training" is needed, according to Fiat. (In a clever feature, the voice system can "read" mobile phone SMS text messages to the driver.)
The system includes a USB port in the glovebox, and is compatible with a wide range of smart phones, MP3 players and USB memory sticks.
Later versions of the system will include a nav system, OnStar-like services, and a "personal assistant" feature.
Oh, "Blue & Me" is meant to evoke "a completely integrated technology with a one-to-one relation with the customer," according to Fiat.