The first car brand to develop its own drive app for the iPhone is Smart. In particular, the Smart ForTwo model has a smart cradle, and hence, the buyer is offered a multimedia trip computer.
Phone calls can be made via a hands-free system. The user gets his own extensive music collection, internet radio and a navigation system with a special smart touch.
Other features include the Car Finder, which will help the driver find where the car is parked. In addition, the smart cradle charges the iPhone and also functions as a hands-free system using the loudspeakers of the Smart radio for sound output.
When phone calls are made, the system automatically mutes the radio. Daimler AG's researchers are currently developing driver assistance systems for users of the smart drive kit for the iPhone.
For now, these features are only found in the Mercedes-Benz E- and S-Class cars. F itted on the windscreen is a camera that transmits images of the area in front of the car to the smart drive kit for the iPhone via WLAN.
This enables the future application to recognize traffic signs with speed limits and to warn the driver if the car is being driven too fast. Expect the smart drive kit for the iPhone to become available from the second quarter of 2010.
The smart cradle for the iPhone is priced at €240 (German list price with VAT plus fitting costs). The smart drive app for the iPhone can be downloaded from the App Store at a one-off price of €9.99 for the basic version. Meanwhile, the navigation upgrade with up-to-date maps costs €49.99 annually.