While Apple's CarPlay and Android Auto aim to provide connectivity and smartness for the current and future generations of Cars being launched, Samsung wants to show some love to existing cars and has brought down the covers ahead of the Unpacked event at MWC 2016, Barcelona to unveil its new Auto solution called Samsung Connect Auto. The Connect Auto will be making use of the OBD II (short for On-Board-Diagnostic) Port that can be found on all light duty vehicles made since 1996, medium duty vehicles since 2005 and even heavy duty vehicles since 2010. To those unaware of what an OBD II port is, it is through this exact port that the car service professional plugs in a laptop to see what exactly has gone wrong with the vehicle and provide necessary solution.
Now, there are plenty of devices already out there in the market that harvest the data from the OBD II port and bring it over to more mainstream interfaces like an android or iOS device or a monitor on the car dashboard. But Samsung's solution with the Connect Auto has its own unique standpoints. For starters, the Connect Auto will work as a WiFi Hotspot, providing in-Car connectivity solution to the passengers. AT&T will be the first Carrier in the US to offer 4G connectivity to the Connect Auto.
The Connect Auto will monitor the Car's fuel consumption and provide necessary info to the drivers to get a better fuel efficiency out of the Car. The device also has a Virtual mechanic feature, that constantly checks the vehicle's status and offers maintenance and service recommendations to the user.
The Connect Auto, just like most of the recent consumer products (apart from phones) from Samsung will be running on Tizen OS, allowing developers to make use of the SDK and bring out more useful services from the Connect Auto device.
If you're one of those who are stepping back from giving smartness to your Car after watching that Viral video of a Jeep getting hacked over radio, then rest assured as the Samsung Connect Auto is protected by Samsung KNOX, which is Samsung's defense-grade mobile security platform to ensure that you never lose control of your car to some keyboard warrior hooked over on the internet.
The Connect Auto will be available from Q2 starting off in the United States and will hit more markets further down the Lane.