Kia showed the latest version of their UVO eServices recently at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas and debuted a new In-Vehicle Infotainment (IVI) concept, both which show the same type of innovation that has so quickly advanced Kia in the automotive market.
New for UVO is a telematics suite (“eServices”) powered by a free smartphone app.? It provides drivers with an innovative in-vehicle connectivity experience including navigation, diagnostics capabilities and added convenience features. Powered by Microsoft? .
UVO is short for “Your Voice,” and provides consumers easy-to-use voice and touch-activated experiences to manage music files and hands-free mobile phone operation
“UVO was a breakthrough for Kia, and signaled the brand’s ambitious plans to become an in-vehicle technology leader by enabling drivers and passengers to use all of their personal technologies more safely and easily, while creating additional entertainment experiences,” said Henry Bzeih, who heads the connected car program for KMA. “With smartphone penetration nearing 50-percent in the U.S., UVO eServices extends our award-winning system’s abilities far beyond the original offerings by utilizing one of the industry’s first app-based approaches for telematics. The development focus for UVO eServices was to deliver the connectivity, services and notifications valued by vehicle owners while also adding safety features, diagnostic information and innovations such as our parked vehicle locator to create user-friendly experiences that exceed people’s expectations.”
UVO gives the driver the ability to control music by voice controls from a variety of media sources, including CD, radio, USB, media player, and the Digital Jukebox. ?Now they can also control the navigation system through voice commands when the vehicle is outfitted with the UVO eServices/navigation package.
Other new UVO eServices are an enhanced telematics suite, which includes a number of maintenance, and infotainment functions, including Crash Notification Assist, Roadside Assist, Automatic Diagnostics, Manual Diagnostics, Scheduled Diagnostics, vehicle maintenance, eServices Guide, Trip Info, safe- and eco-friendly driving awards, Send2Car, Curfew Limit, Speed Alert, Geo Fencing, Car Care Web and Park Assist. These functions, with the exception of eServices Guide and Crash Notification Assist, are run through the owner’s smartphone equipped with the free UVO eServices app.
Key Features of UVO eServices include:
- eServices Guide:?accessed via the touch-screen or voice command, eServices Guide places a phone call to a voice response system that explains UVO eServices to the driver in an interactive manner.
- Car Care Web:?Through the UVO eServices owner’s portal, known as “Car Care Web,” owners can check vehicle diagnostics, vehicle status, maintenance schedules, driving behavior, My Car Zone alerts, and schedule appointments with their preferred or nearby dealer via their home computer or mobile device.
- Send2Car:?This feature allows owners of Kia?s equipped with a navigation system to send a destination from Google Maps to their smart phone. After the phone receives the destination, it will send the destination to the vehicle’s navigation system the next time the phone is paired viaBluetooth?2?wireless technology.
- Vehicle Diagnostics:?If UVO’s eServices identifies a problem by way of the Automatic Diagnostics function, it will communicate the vehicle’s list of issues and its location to Kia’s 24/7 call center or will schedule an appointment online with the nearest Kia dealership upon user request.
- Crash Notification Assist:?In case of an airbag deployment, the Crash Notification Assist function will alert emergency services. After a 10-second delay, during which time the driver has the option to cancel the call, UVO will dial 9-1-1, read the vehicle’s location aloud to the emergency services operator and allow the operator to speak with the vehicle occupants.
- My Car Zone:?UVO eServices helps drivers stay up to date on their vehicle’s whereabouts while away from the car. Curfew Limits in terms of time stamps or even GPS coordinates through ‘Geo Fencing’ (a predetermined area plotted in the navigation system) can be set. If the car leaves that area or is used outside of predetermined hours, the owner receives a detailed alert on his or her smartphone the next time the driver pairs the phone with the vehicle via?Bluetooth??wireless technology. The Speed Watch function also allows owners to set a predetermined maximum speed for the car, and receive an alert if exceeded.
- Park Assist:?If the driver happens to forget where they parked the car, the Park Assist function helps find it by sending the location of the vehicle when it is parked to the driver’s phone.
Kia also showed its IVI concept, which uses an 11.6-inch multi-touch screen to transfer music, contacts and directions between smartphone or tablets and the vehicle. Once the user’s smartphone or tablet is synced with the vehicle, many of the device’s features and apps become available through the IVI system. ?The IVI system also allows users to charge devices without the need for conventional wired chargers.