Denso plans to launch its answer to Ford’s Sync voice-activated infotainment system in 2011.
Called Blue Harmony, the system allows drivers to manage music, directions, e-mail, Internet radio, news headlines and other infotainment options through voice commands. It is displayed on a touch-screen mounted in the center of the dashboard, according to Craig Matichuk, Denso telematics systems engineer.
Matichuk led the development of Blue Harmony from Denso’s North American headquarters in Southfield.
The Blue Harmony system also allows users to customize the touch-screen layout, and download Denso-developed applications to run services like Pandora Internet radio, social networking Web site Facebook and photo sharing Web site Flickr.
Unlike some voice-activated infotainment systems on the market now, Blue Harmony does not require several specific prompts to play a particular song over the vehicle’s sound system.
Instead, a Blue Harmony prototype demo at the 2010 North American International Auto Show allowed Matichuk to create a new station on customizable Internet radio station Pandora by saying “I want to make a new Pandora station.”
The system is still under development and Denso is demonstrating prototypes to potential customers, which Denso senior public relations specialist Bridgette Gollinger declined to name.
The system is expected to go to production in 2011.
Visteon Corp. and Delphi Automotive L.L.P. are also developing competing technologies.
Courtesy: Crains Detroit.