Garmin portable navigation kit now offered on all VolvosEnlarge Photo
As cars become more connected with the virtual world around us, automakers will be required to pay closer attention to the features and quality of the infotainment systems they place inside their automobiles.
We want the responsiveness of an Apple iPhone touchscreen mixed with the ease of use of, well an Apple iPhone. An infotainment system should be both intuitive and full of information. Additionally, it should offer up only the information that you require at any given time. It makes sense that non-automaker institutions would be the proper establishments to provide motorists with solutions. One such company is Garmin.
Per Autoweek, Garmin is working on a next-generation infotainment system, and it's based off technology already being utilized in the aerospace industry. Called the K2, this Garmin system is similar to the touch-screen glass system already employed in aircraft such as the Cirrus SR22. It integrates the Garmin navigation technology with the standard slew of automotive necessities such as audio controls, Bluetooth phone pairing, and any other items crucial to the daily operation of a modern vehicle. Additionally, the system can display real-time traffic information as well as email and text message alerts.
Still, Garmin realizes that not everyone wants all of their controls relegated to a touch-screen panel. Some important buttons remain just that, as real buttons with real feedback.
Garmin already has an "in" with a handful of automakers, and currently supplies the navigation backbone for Chrysler products. Mercedes-Benz also recently announced plans to include Garmin in its infotainment system in the very near future. If the K2 system takes off, perhaps even more automakers will leave the tech implementation to non-automaker-based companies. In our opinion, that's a wise move.