At the 2011 IAA Motor Show in Frankfurt, Mercedes Benz introducing an "iPhone Interface Plus" concept, available as a retrofit on every Mercedes Benz starting summer 2012.
The Apple iPhone can be fully integrated into the control and display system of vehicles bearing the three-pointed star, using a special app to exploit the capabilities of the hippest premium smartphone on the market. Entertainment on the move, plus access to the internet, are made possible by an ingenious head restraint mounting for the Apple iPad.
"…the iPhone screen can be seen on the display screen of the audio system, the audio signals are played through the car's loudspeakers and the smartphone itself can be controlled through the car's rotary pushbutton - a perfect example of successful integration. And of course all the time the iPhone is connected to the control unit, it will automatically be recharging."
The Mercedes-Benz app is designed specifically for the in-car user, the app features a larger display that is ideally suited for use in the car, as well as numerous functions that make the most of the many capabilities of the trendy smartphone. The offers:
- Holistic integration of social networking throughout the product with features including "Like currently playing media" and "Share your current destination via Facebook and Twitter"
- Ability to route to a destination with a click of a button, be it a Facebook event or a Google Local Search result or your Friends-on-Map
- Always be on top of latest posts from Facebook and Twitter via text-to-speech
- Seamless selection from on-board media using Cover Art and intuitive access to Personalized Radio or thousands of Internet Radio channels
- Easy access to all contacts from phonebook and other social media sources including Facebook and Twitter
- Access on-board media and your personal playlists
- "Car Finder", which guides you back to where your car is parked, even in an unfamiliar town
Mercedes also announced a new "crash-proof holder" for iPad, which attaches the device to headrests for rear passenger viewing. From the press release:
"The iPad Integration Plus system for rear seat passengers can be tilted, or turned through 90°. This convenient docking station is an ergonomic solution that makes it possible to use the Apple iPad, with all its familiar functions, in your Mercedes-Benz. All connection points are easily accessible. The battery can also be recharged, using a separate Apple data cable that links into the vehicle's on-board electricity supply via an integrated USB interface."
Full press release: