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Vince Galante, Chief Designer of User Experience, FCA Fiat Chrysler Automobiles [BIT:FCA]
User experience or UX as it is sometimes called, has become a significant reason for purchase. Tailored for each brand, vehicle and region, designers and electrical engineers work to make systems unique. Third-party research has shown that 51 percent of new-car buyers consider in-vehicle technology as part of their purchase. Also, 64 percent of customers reported their technology experience made them more likely to buy from the same brand (Source: 2018 Harris Poll Auto TechCast). The award-winning Uconnect system has led the industry in content and exclusive features since its inception in 2003 and the fifth generation continues the momentum.
With future growth in mind, the advanced Uconnect 5 architecture is now scalable across all FCA brands and preps for the integration of advanced technology. Additionally, Uconnect 5’s Android operating system lays a foundation, bringing access to a broad catalog of applications to answer the rapidly developing demand for an improved user experience.
Uconnect 5 features several fully customizable interfaces storing up to five different user profiles. Each customer can build their own profile, featuring preferences for music and vehicle operation. The system also connects vehicle-side systems to a driver’s profile, such as temperature, seating position and mirror placement. Switching between user profiles is simple and can be handled by a single touch.
The all-new Uconnect 5 allows users to create an exclusive home screen with a familiar feel. Similar to specific icon placement on a mobile phone or computer, customers can personalize the Uconnect home screen with frequently used features for quick and easy access, featuring one-touch operation.
The system processing power, reaction speed and memory have been enhanced to take advantage of the new Android operating system. In combination with an upgraded 50K MIPS chip, 6GB of RAM and up to 64GB of flash memory, the all-new Uconnect 5 delivers operating speeds that are five times faster when compared to the previous generation.
The award-winning Uconnect system has led the industry in content and exclusive features since its inception in 2003 and the fifth generation continues the momentum
Additional outputs enable up to four displays in the vehicle. Screens are available in a variety of aspect ratios, standard, landscape and portrait, offering more flexibility in packaging and design across all FCA brands. With up to 15 million pixels in Ultra HD, screens can work separately or in harmony, depending on user preference and purpose. The all-new Uconnect 5 also represents the most screen area ever offered in an FCA product at up to 12.3 inches.
With the Uconnect skill for Alexa, customers with Alexa-enabled devices at home can easily ask Alexa to start the car, lock/unlock doors and more. Uconnect 5 brings Amazon Alexa directly into the vehicle itself, giving occupants the freedom to interact with Alexa just as they do at home or on a personal device.
Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
The award-winning Uconnect system offers new conveniences, keeping customers engaged and informed all while keeping their hands on the wheel and eyes on the road. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are currently available on more than 80 percent of FCA’s North American applications. Uconnect 5 will bring Apple CarPlay and Android Auto to 100 percent of FCA’s North American offerings.
Uconnect 5 features a new voice recognition engine with software, microphone technology and natural voice capability. Statements that would normally be only understood in human-to-human conversation can now be used to communicate with the navigation system, such as “Find an available EV charging station near me.” The advanced voice control system also improves its listening ability in high background noise situations, such as a rolled down window or rain hitting the windshield. Additionally, the embedded FCA voice recognition system has a new “wake up word” available that correlates to the brand of the vehicle: “Hey Chrysler, change the temperature to 70 degrees.”
The all-new Uconnect 5 features the ability to connect two Bluetooth phones simultaneously. This addresses many users who carry multiple phones or for passenger interaction with the Uconnect system along with the driver.
Maps Over the Air
Maps Over the Air is a TomTom technology which automatically detects, downloads and installs relevant available map updates in the background. By 2022, FCA will offer more than 30 nameplates with electrified powertrains, half of which are plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV) or battery-electric vehicles (BEV), creating the need for charging stations to be integrated with the maps.
SiriusXM with 360L
FCA was the first in the industry to offer SiriusXM 360L with Personalized Stations Powered by Pandora along with thousands of hours of downloadable content, including live sports, free on-demand shows, performances and interviews.
Uconnect 5 also offers the Uconnect Market in-vehicle commerce platform. This feature gives customers the opportunity to conveniently order food, find the nearest gas station, save money on fuel purchases and make dinner reservations. Drivers can also locate and pay for nearby parking and schedule service appointments at FCA dealerships, all while in the vehicle without having to reach for a physical credit card.
4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot is improved with a faster operating system. Processing speeds that are five times faster assist in keeping up to eight devices connected. The new software, hardware and operating system take the next evolutional step toward 5G.
Eyes on the Road
The all-new Uconnect features additional elements to reduce distracted driving. Voice control is improved with new microphone technology and placement. Upgraded software identifies more tone variation and recognizes commands versus background noise, such as wind noise from a window rolled down at speed.
Firmware Over The Air (FOTA) Updates
Servicing and updating your FCA vehicle has never been easier. In-vehicle messaging will notify owners when an oil change is needed. This and other features work in harmony with the Vehicle Health Report and Vehicle Health Alert to provide the most up-to-date information. For some updates, FOTA will automatically load the improved software to the vehicle, seamlessly.
The all-new Uconnect system takes autonomous driving initiatives into consideration for future products with the addition of a Telematics Box Module (TBM). The TBM assists in quickly moving large amounts of data, engineered for the fastest speeds available.