Volvo turns the Microsoft Band 2 fitness tracker into a voice controller for your car.
Ever fancied talking to your car via a device on your wrist? Well you’re in luck. Volvo has beefed up the voice recognition system in its new cars to allow drivers to issue commands via the Microsoft Band 2 fitness wearable.
Users speaking into their Microsoft Band 2 will be able to perform tasks such as setting the navigation, activating the heater, locking the doors, and honking the horn or flashing the lights to aid in finding your car in a car park.
Essentially, it’ll perform most of the functions available through the Volvo on Call mobile app, without the need to fumble around for a mobile phone, or tap the touchscreen inside your vehicle.
Issuing voice commands to your motor is nothing new; many modern models now come equipped with the feature as standard. However the usefulness of voice control in vehicle applications remains questionable. Anyone who’s ever used these systems will likely tell you just how unreliable, unintuitive, clunky and restrictive they can be.
That said, Volvo seems to think it can add value. Klas Bendrik, Senior Vice President and Group Chief Information Officer at Volvo said: “When innovating we are not interested in technology for the sake of technology. If a technology does not make a customer’s life easier, better, safer or more fun, we don’t use it. Let’s face it – who hasn’t dreamed of talking to their car via a wrist worm wearable?”
The system will become available from Spring 2016 in every country that has Volvo on Call available.