Apple, who is at the forefront of the digital music revolution, has struck an alliance with Acura, Audi, Honda and Volkswagen wherein the company will deliver iPod integration with their car stereos for models which will be launched beginning next year. A formal announcement to this effect was made on Wednesday.
Seamless integration of iPods with car stereos will facilitate motorists’ high quality sound while on the move. Not only that, they will have an entire music library at their disposal which they can carry wherever they want. Commented Greg Joswiak, Vice-President (Product Marketing), “We’re thrilled to team up with Acura, Audi, Honda and Volkswagen to provide drivers with a seamless iPod experience. Car companies are embracing the iPod, and over 30 percent of the cars sold in the US in 2006 will offer iPod integration.” 30 per cent number roughly translates into some 5 million cars. On an overall basis, there are now 15 car companies in the world which are providing this facility.
The Honda and Acura Music Link iPod integrations will be the first to include text-to-speech capabilities or VoiceID, which is used to search for playlists, artist and album names or genre information. Acura and Honda will feature iPod integration in the majority of their lineup beginning later this year.
After this deal, Acura and Honda are likely to introduce iPod integration in the majority of their lineup to be available in the market later this year. There are also indications from Audi quarters that from November, its A3, A4 and TT models will have iPod integrated stereo systems while Volkswagen will be providing this facility with their cars which will be launched next year. I guess dealers will be selling iPods too?