Audi Teams Up With T-Mobile For Audi Connect Service
By Carl Malek
Audi has recently announced that T-Mobile Service Inc. will carry the company’s upcoming Audi Connect Services system which will be available throughout the company’s vehicle lineup beginning with the 2012 model year.
The new wireless service (which will make its world debut in the 2012 Audi A7 when it launches in April) will include features such as voice-activated Google Earth, Google Interactive Search, and Sirius Traffic information which when combined with the use of Google Earth Imagery will not only provide drivers with topographical and satellite images, but will also be the first time this technology has ever been used in the industry.
In addition to being an excellent traffic reporting-platform. The system will also drivers other features such as real time news alerts, weather, and even fuel prices. Have a passenger that has a WIFI-capable device and wants to find a funny video on Youtube or find out the latest details on how their NCAA brackets are fairing? no worries, The system can turn the car into a rolling WI FI hotspot if needed, which will allow passengers to access information on the Internet in a quick and secure manner.
All of these features will be accessed through Audi’s familiar MMI control system with a dealer provided T-Mobile sim card plugged into the dash. Owners that opt for Audi Connect Services will be given a free six month trial of the service. After the six month period is up, they will have to pay a monthly rate to keep using the service. Pricing has not been officially announced by either T-Mobile or Audi as of this writing.
It will be interesting to see how the Audi Connect Services will perform out in the real world (especially with the MMI’s reputation of being a clunky system to use when driving) but regardless it will allow customers to interact with their vehicles in new and unique ways.