1980s TV cult classic Knight Rider captured the hearts and minds of a generation - The Hoff and his talking Trans Am KITT using futuristic technology to solve crime all with the flick of a wrist. Now Volvo and Microsoft have joined forces to bring this science fiction concept to reality with their new wearable voice control system.
Volvo owners will be able to talk to their car via a Microsoft Band 2 worn on their wrist, allowing them to remotely instruct their vehicle to perform tasks including, setting the navigation, starting the heater, locking the doors, flashing the lights or sounding the horn via a mobile app and the connected wearable device.
Volvo national manager Coby Duggan, says this new innovation shows the company’s commitment to making the driving experience as convenient as possible for its customers.
“While activating your car from your wrist was an early TV predecessor to today’s wearable tech, bringing it to life in 2016 is just the beginning of what is possible with digital assistant functionalities, “ says Duggan.
“At Volvo we focus on technologies which can truly benefit our customers’ lives. Each new innovation has to have a reason for being, that is, to make the drive easier, better, safer or more fun,” he says.
Duggan says moore recently Volvo has begun to focus closely on innovations outside the traditional automotive arena, opening up potential partnerships and new business models.
Executive Vice President of business development at Microsoft Peggy Johnson, says the Volvo partnership continues to bring ground breaking technology to enhance the automotive experience.
"Together with Volvo, we're just beginning to understand the potential that technology has to improve driver safety and productivity,” she says.
The Microsoft Band 2 connection will be available to New Zealand customers in the Volvo On Call mobile app in 2018.