Honda has announced a new infotainment system today that it has dubbed Honda Connect, and the system will be powered by Android and Nvidia’s Tegra auto grade processor. The Honda Connect systems are slated to be showing up standard in at least three of Honda’s new models next year including the Civic, the Civic Tourer, and the CR-V. Honda Connect will also be running on Android 4.0.4, that’s Ice Cream Sandwich goodness for those of you who are Android newcomers, and will apparently be available in Europe in early 2015. The Honda Connect system will be Honda’s answer to taking the increased interest of the driver to utilize smartphone apps inside the car and blending it into the driving experience in such a way that it’s not only safe but in appeasement of the requirements of the automotive industry.
The Honda Connect will consist of a 7-inch capacitive touch screen display for interaction, usable for things like satellite navigation, radio(AM/FM/DAB)vehicle data and the rearview camera for use while backing up, allowing for an easy way to see what’s going on behind you. It will also allow for the capability to install other apps as well. Since the system runs on android and houses a capacitive touch screen, that also means that it will carry pinch to zoom features and gestures, so using it will be just as easy and familiar as using a smartphone or a tablet that currently runs Android.
Rob Csongor who is Nvidia’s general manager for automotive stated that “Honda is bringing NVIDIA’s advanced mobile technology to an important new segment of vehicles,” something that we’d completely agree with. A touch of personalization is also mentioned, giving the driver the ability to customize the screen on the Honda Connect system to make it their own. The car is a personal thing, and Android is big on personalization, so it makes sense that Honda should want to include this as an option. How exactly they plan to let drivers customize the display is uncertain, but it is Android so we’d expect choice of screen backdrop, collection of apps on the main screen, etc. as being possible options to make the system more personal. The Honda Connect system will also give drivers access to the Honda App Center, where they can find, download and install additional apps to further personalize their experience with the system itself and their vehicle.