NEW YORK — Bluetooth and nearfield communications (NFC) technologies could become the technologies of choice for aftermarket mobile electronics suppliers that want to offer new convenience features to consumers.
Harman International pointed the way at the recent Geneva Auto Show, where a demo vehicle’s seat positions and infotainment- and navigation-system settings were adjusted automatically when an NFC-embedded smartphone was placed near a thin, flat NFC antenna embedded in the vehicle’s passenger compartment. NFC requires a distance of 4 inches or less to operate.
No NFC or Bluetooth standards yet exist for such applications, but aftermarket car-A/V and security suppliers don’t have to wait. They could bypass the lack of standards by developing proprietary apps for NFC-enabled smartphones that would communicate with the suppliers’ NFC-enabled head units or security systems.
For security suppliers, greater potential exists in using Bluetooth in lieu of NFC to eliminate the need to tap a phone against an NFC antenna, which would have to be mounted on the inside of a vehicle’s window if someone wanted to disarm a security system before entering. Bluetooth could also be the first choice of aftermarket car-A/V suppliers because Bluetooth is already embedded in so many aftermarket head units.
To automatically control adjust a vehicle’s seat and mirror positions or climate-control settings, the aftermarket security and car-A/V systems would plug into an OEM-integration module along the lines of those available from Automotive Data Systems (ADS). The Canadian company already offers firmware-upgradable universal modules that integrate aftermarket security/ remote-start systems to OEM digital databuses, enabling those systems to remotely control factory door locks and starters. ADS is also developing a universal module that will retain the functionality of OEM infotainment systems from multiple automakers when an aftermarket head unit is installed.
“It’s technically possible to interface with these features if available on [a vehicle’s OEM] CAN network,” said ADS marketing director Dan Facciolo. Added ADS audio engineering director Mark Rutledge, “If [car-A/V suppliers] decided to provide this communication between phones and their radios, we could certainly provide access to the vehicle systems.”
For the complete article by Joseph Palenchar, visit Twice.com.