2011 Geneva: Harman creates world’s first social networking vehicle

Article by Christian Andrei, on March 2, 2011

HARMAN, a global audio and infotainment company, will help create the Rinspeed BamBoo electric concept car, which is going to be the world’s first social networking vehicle. At the Geneva Motor Show, HARMAN showcased the connectivity solutions that balance convenience, safety, and driving enjoyment, together with HARMAN’s GreenEdge energy efficient audio solutions and HALOsonic technologies for electric vehicles.

HARMAN is doing this in response to the needs of consumers for an increasingly networked and greener lifestyle. With HARMAN’s latest scalable infotainment platform, a number of connectivity and networking options were accommodated in the system to bring the BamBoo to life.

The infotainment head unit consists of HARMAN’s Aha Radio technology, which uses its patent-pending predictive search technology and intuitive voice technologies to help reduce distractions in accessing social media and online content.

To make driving safer and more comfortable, the Aha Radio application converts text-based digital content to voice and plays it back. With this application, passengers and drivers can monitor traffic, hear Facebook and Twitter updates, listen to streaming music via satellite or the Internet, or play podcasts from their favorite channels.

To actualize the car’s fun and social personality concept, the infotainment system has integrated WiFi to connect the vehicle to the people and places around it via the Internet. HARMAN’s most advanced data streaming protocols allow the vehicle to share digital music with those in and around the BamBoo.

HARMAN, with a full range of smartphone support, allows seamless connectivity among tablet computers from HTC Corporation, Android-based smartphones and the HARMAN in-dash head unit.

This feature enables safe driving as information like SMS texts and e-mails are converted from text-to-speech. As a result, drivers can concentrate on the road and keep their hands on the wheel.

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