Did you think Samsung was going to stay out of the race of putting technology in cars? After plenty of other major players in the technology industry started meddling with cars’ boards, it’s now time for Samsung Electronics to show what they can bring to the table.
But this South Korean company isn’t that interested in plugging smart gadgets or features into new cars as much as it wants to turn old clunkers into smart cars by adding various devices running the Tizen OS.
There are more features contained in the Samsung Connect Auto dongle; a Wi-Fi hotspot, an LTE modem, a GPS receiver and even a small computer running Tizen. All of these connect to a car’s on-board diagnostic system directly under the steering wheel.
Samsung is getting ready to show off its new project at Mobile World Congress 2016, which will take place Monday through Thursday in Barcelona, Spain.
According to the company, the dongle is touted as a performant way to increase fuel efficiency and improve driving behavior, while also keeping the passengers entertained. Older and cheaper car models could be upgraded with Samsung’s dongle, bringing them to the level of connectivity found in top-of-the-range vehicles.
Under the steering wheel, there is a handy OBD II port that the company’s dongle can plug into. Beyond giving the driver a new perspective when it comes to the data about the vehicle’s engine performance and fuel consumption, the port also offers a better alternative to the lighter socket.
In addition to supplying 12-volt power, the port is extremely useful for charging gadgets – and it’s more convenient as it is out of the way. Ever since 1996, these ports have been mandatory on new U.S. vehicles; in the European Union, these obligations started being introduced in 2000.
Samsung said the Samsung Connect Auto will become available for sale before the end of June in the U.S., using AT&T as its very first wireless service provider. The company sees its offer as more than just a cellular modem; in the future, it plans to build a veritable collection of related products and services through other partnerships.
The automotive market has started presenting an interest for Samsung for other possible applications of its technology. For example, it is scheduled to demonstrate at Mobile World Congress a “concept parking prepayment service” in collaboration with SAP (an enterprise software developer) and Seat (a Spanish automobile manufacturer).
Image Source: Yahoo!