March 24 2008 / by memebox
Category: Transportation Year: 2008 Rating: 9
Bloomberg reports that beleaguered auto manufacturer Chrysler LLC will begin offering wifi aboard their vehicles later this year. As the first major auto producer to provide internet access, this will give the company a big brand and gadgetry edge, though its vehicles will no doubt continue to lag in mileage and quality construction.
The feature will be added to existing vehicles by dealers beginning this year and later be installed on the assembly line, Frank Klegon, Executive Vice President—Product Development, said. The Wi-Fi port, initially to be sold as a separate device, will eventually be built into the vehicle’s radio system and coordinated with other audio and video technologies to allow such things as transferring music files from the user’s home computer.
Users will need a subscription to a wireless carrier in order to connect to the internet, which will likely limit access to areas within range of cell towers. Nevertheless, it marks a fresh start for a desperate company sorely in need of compelling consumer offerings, allowing a variety of applications, such as basic navigation systems and music downloads, and eventually a much broader suite of networked add-ons.
Somewhat surprisingly, it appears that the future of auto-web connectivity will first be championed by an American manufacturer.