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OEM-System Integration With Smartphones, Tablets Advances

7/12/2011 11:39:35 AM Eastern

New York - Smartphone and tablet integration with automotive
OEM systems gained ground with separate announcements from Harman International
and Pandora.

 Harman said it became
the first automotive OEM supplier to support
the Android Open Accessory Protocol, which lets drivers control Android smartphone and tablet content -- including
music, movie and navigation apps -- through a
car's dashboard and steering-wheel
controls and via a vehicle's OEM voice-activation system.

 For its part,
Internet music service Pandora announced that it established a relationship with Scion and expanded
its Ford relationship.

 At Harman, the
company will build the Android protocol into its low- to high-end offerings to connect to
Android tablets and smartphones via USB. 
The protocol is built
into Android tablets running
Android 3.1 (Honeycomb) and Android smartphones running Android 2.3.4 (Gingerbread) and
later. Harman's Android protocol adoption extends Android email and SMS support previously launched by
the company.

 Additional capabilities
enabled by the Android protocol adoption include enhancing OEM navigation systems by,
for example, delivering info via smartphone on nearby restaurants, tourist spots or gas stations for
overlay into OEM maps.

 With Harman's
adoption of the Android protocol, the OEM supplier said it supports all major mobile operating
systems, including Apple's iOS, Research in Motion's BlackBerry platform and
Nokia's existing mobile systems.

 For its part,
Internet music service Pandora announced that it established a relationship with Scion and expanded
its Ford relationship.
Ford plans to offer Pandora control in 10
Ford vehicles and two Lincoln vehicles, up from five Fords and one
Lincoln. The current Ford/Lincoln models are the 2011 Fiesta and 2012 models of Fusion, Fusion Hybrid,
Ford Mustang, Shelby GT500 and Lincoln MKZ.
This fall, Ford will add the 2012
F-150, F-Series
Super Duty, Expedition,
E-Series, F-150 SVT Raptor and Lincoln
Navigator. At Scion, the company will offer Pandora control in the xB in mid-July and the tC RS
7.0 in August.

 Currently, Pandora service
is also integrated in select BMWs, Mercedes-Benz vehicles
and Minis. Other
automakers that have announced
plans to integrate Pandora include Buick, Chevrolet, GMC, Hyundai and Toyota,
Pandora noted. The personalized
Internet radio
service is also available in aftermarket
head units made by Alpine, JVC, Kenwood and Pioneer, with
radios from Sony coming soon, Pandora said.

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