by Stephanie Mlot at PC Magazine
Jaguar Land Rover is looking to balance entertainment with safety via its new justDrive in-car infotainment service.
Developed by Silicon Valley-based CloudCar, the voice-activated justDrive is part of the InControl platform for iOS 8 users (an Android version is coming early next year), and integrates services like Spotify, Twitter, and Yelp.
Drivers can simply plug their smartphone into the vehicle (limited to the 15MY Jaguar F-Type and all 15MY Land Rovers) and control apps through the car’s touch screen or voice recognition to minimize driver distraction.
“The apps are enhanced for in-car use, so it is like having your smartphone installed in your dashboard,” Dr. Wolfgang Epple, director of research and technology for Jaguar Land Rover, said in a statement.
JustDrive’s plain speech recognition package means customers can communicate naturally with their car, as if it were just another passenger, rather than a robotic voice that responds only to syntax commands.
So, instead of calling up a separate fuel search app, the motorist can simply ask justDrive for directions to the closest gas station.
“While our aim is to significantly enhance the driving experience through unprecedented levels of connectivity, we also want to reduce driver distraction,” Epple said. “Using speech as a key enabler, together with justDrive’s simple and clean user interface, means we only show essential information to help create a safe, non-distracting driving environment.”
Dictate and send a tweet or SMS by saying, “Tell George I’ll be late”; the car will read the message back to you before sending it. Also, listen to your favorite tunes by asking for a particular song.
JustDrive joins 17 other apps—including Stitcher, iHeartRadio, and Parkopedia—currently available in Jaguar Land Rover’s InControl Apps system.
Apple’s CarPlay, meanwhile, arrived this year in select cars from Jaguar Land Rover.