Monday, November 7, 2011

How smart is your Car?

Any MINI equipped with MINI Connected allows the driver to simply tuck an iPhone into the built-in USB port making it one with the MINI hi-res cockpit display. That's just the half of it -search for places nearby using Google Local SearchTM, monitor your driving efficiency and even update your Facebook and Twitter status on the move. See MINI Connected in the new film and get an overview of all the current and up coming functionalities.

Our new film shows just how intuitively and safely this game-changing feature works. A powerful tool for communications and social networking, MINI Connected unites trailblazing in-car technology with a groundbreaking app that can be downloaded to the driver's iPhone, turning the MINI into a thoroughly wired telecommunications and infotainment control center. The technology takes car-smartphone integration to an unprecedented level, and promises to deliver an ever-growing list of features in the form of app upgrades and extensions as available technologies and social networking capabilities develop.

Because the new technology required a film quite unlike any other that MINI has done before, the MINI Connected Team searched out a crew that could bring the groundbreaking technology's intuitive, powerful and polished feel to the screen. What they found was a crew of passionate pros at Red Gate Films who live for bringing cutting-edge gear like this to life. We had a chat with David Bousquet, director and cinematographer on the project to get a feel for what went into the project.

The work of his team really brings the world of MINI Connected into the cockpit. Carefully crafting 3D models and introducing them seamlessly both into and outside the cabin of the MINI Countryman required a great deal of patience, time - and a full film crew tiptoeing around in their socks (apparently 3D models and pitch black studios are pretty sensitive environments).
Ok, so what can it do? Eight features are currently available today with more exciting features to come this summer!

Connectivity: MINI Connected lets you stay synched to local news sources via customizable RSS feeds and your social network 24/7 by receiving Facebook and Twitter status updates as text on the dash display. Post your destinations, estimated arrival times and more to Twitter with preset tweets. You can even watch video podcasts uploaded to your iPhone right in-dash.

Navigation: Need to find the nearest gas station? Laundromat? Mexican restaurant? Just use Google Local SearchTM as simply as you normally would when using your iPhone to get around, or use the Google Send-to-CarTM function, allowing Google MapsTM to link up with the in-car navigation system of your MINI to give you detailed driving directions to wherever you need to go. Friends can even send you directions - right to the car.

Driving Efficiency: The MINIMALISM Analyzer records driving data that will personally help you environmentally streamline your driving style in a way that's as fun to use as it is earth-friendly. This function will record a range of data from your drive - like acceleration, gear changes and braking - displaying it in real time, ranking your stats with a star system. You can then assess the efficiency of your road technique from journey to journey, comparing online and competing with other users in your quest to become the world's greenest MINI driver.

Vehicle Interaction: Coming this summer the Mission Control** module will give you the ability to interact directly with your car. Your MINI will let you know outside air temperatures, or give you a friendly reminder to fasten your seatbelt and other situation-dependent messages. You can finally give your MINI the character and personality you always knew it had with options like, a choice of language versions and driving modes.

Music: MINI Connected can also use your iPhone to stream webradio stations from anywhere in the world - utilizing the familiar controls of the MINI audio system - giving you a prime opportunity to get acquainted with the four pre-programmed MINI Sounds Webradio stations. You can download the app and use it for webradio even if you don't have a MINI. US drivers will be able to customize their favorite Pandora* stations by directly controling the Pandora iPhone app. This summer you'll be able to rock out with an innovative new feature called Dynamic Music**. Taking the audio interactivity of MINI Connected one step further: specialized songs will allow the music coming out of your car stereo to respond directly to your driving style, so you can mix your own soundtrack as you drive. Step on it to kick up the BPM, or relax your driving style to hear more chilled-out beats.

*Source MINI Space

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