South Korean automotive manufacturer Hyundai announced last Thursday its partnership with Amazon that will allow drivers to control their new Genesis luxury sedans using their Amazon Echo speakers and its built-in voice virtual assistant Alexa.
The Seoul-based company says owners of the Hyundai Genesis G90 will be able to command the Alexa system through the Echo to have their cars perform certain essential functions like start or turn off the car, lock or unlock doors, turn on or off the air conditioner, flash the headlights, and honk the horn.
Users have to remember to begin their command with “Alexa” and direct it to the sedan with “tell Genesis” before the task it’s meant to do. So it would go like this, “Alexa, tell Genesis to start my car” or “Alexa, tell Genesis to lock (or unlock) my car.” They can give such orders from the comfort of their living room.
Hyundai behind BMW footsteps
Hyundai’s Genesis, a stand-alone luxury division much like Toyota’s Lexus and Nissan’s Infiniti, will continue the latest trend in car technology set by BMW a few days ago.
The German automaker also partnered with Amazon and owners can now control their BMWs with their voice. The Echo-Alexa is available in all 2016’s BMW models and will be a constant feature in all future models.
Via voice commands owners can tell their BMW to park and get out of the parking spot automatically, to open or shut doors, and to stay vigilant of the car’s health and fuel levels.
But Genesis drivers have the advantage of being able to remotely voice commands, from inside their home, instead of going near or being inside the vehicle like it apparently works with the BMWs.
Next in line seems to be Ford. The American company announced last month that All 2017 Ford models would support Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, and Amazon Echo’s voice commands.
Alexa to set up smart homes and smart cars
Back in July, Amazon Alexa voice control partnered with the Smart Lock of August Home, leading provider of smart locks and smart home access products and services. Through Amazon’s AI device Echo, people can monitor, check, or secure its house doors with just the sound of their voice by saying the wake word, “Alexa.”
Migrating into automotive business was the next logical step by allowing owners to do similar things with their vehicles. Even though the Alexa app got paired with the Hyundai Genesis for basic car functions, the voice assistant has other features that can be applied while driving.
The Alexa app can play determined songs, put on podcasts, play music from specific genres and play music from different stations on Pandora. Most importantly, can also help drivers with simple traffic estimates.
And there’s room for improvement as the Amazon Alexa could provide directions, top-restaurants, send texts and emails, and many other useful actions in the future. Apple’s Siri and Google Now already do.
Source: USA TODAY