Another of the many strong contenders for the title of best connected car system at the CES 2011 is the Toyota Entune telematics service, which functions through an app on your smartphone and is going to work with a select number of the firm’s cars with are navigation equipped.
Once you have the app on your phone the program then integrates itself with the car through Bluetooth and pops up on the Toyota’s LCD screen. Basically it give you several different features such a Bing local search, internet radio and an OpenTable application.
The Bing local business search is the only feature which can be controlled by voice and it lets you look for local shops and businesses in a conversational manner without the need to use specific terms. Once you find something which interests you then you can either go their using step by step directions of call the business concerned.
The OpenTable system lets you check availability at nearby eateries and then make a reservation while you drive. The same idea works with MovieTickets if you fancy a last minute dash to the nearest cinema.
You can also get the expected live traffic reports, news, weather and share market updates
Music- wise you have iheartradio, with hundreds of radio channels to choose from and Pandora. Although there is no voice control on these the steering wheel located controls should help you choose your music while driving safely. You also have HD radio, XM and the choice of listening to old fashioned radio or even popping in a CD.
The app will be available and working in late 2011 or early 2012. No word on the price yet but if it is an affordable one then this could a real winner for Toyota. I wonder if you are as keen to give it a try out as I am?