Honda Motor Co. plans to introduce via the 2013 Accord this fall a new connectivity system that will allow drivers to access Internet content in the car through a smartphone. The system, dubbed as HondaLink, relies on driver's iPhone or Android smartphone to connect to the Internet. According to Honda, HondaLink’s content will include Internet radio stations, podcasts and audiobooks.
Other content includes audible Facebook or Twitter updates, and local restaurant listings. HondaLink will bring Honda in line with its rivals -- including Ford, Toyota and Hyundai -- which already have in-car connectivity systems on the market, and in some cases, have been offering them for years.
After having the HondaLink system debut on the 2013 Accord this fall, the Japanese plans to fit the connectivity system on the 2013 Crosstour. A driver could control HondaLink's content though a downloadable HondaLink smartphone application, which allows users to select Internet radio stations and other content in a list of presets.
HondaLink then displays the preset Internet radio stations and other apps in a list on the vehicle's display. The driver could operate the system through controls mounted on the center stack audio head or steering wheel or by voice command. A customer has to select the content before getting into the car, and once he is behind the wheel, he can access Internet content through HondaLink without touching their smartphones.
Charles Koch, manager of new business development for American Honda, said that smartphones have become so integral to people's lives that they even used them in vehicles. Koch remarked that the challenge is allow drivers to use their smartphones without getting manually or visually distracted.