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Hyundai Revs Up Its Smart Device Integration

No keys, wave to start


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Remember that horror movie where the woman tries to start her car, drops her keys, and by the time she picks them up the zombie is right there to feast on her brains? Hyundai's updated Blue Link app, made in partnership with Station Digital Media, will make sure this never happens again—or for the first time, for that matter.

The new app, which can run on an Android smartwatch in addition to your smart phone, will allow users to start their cars with just a wave of the hand and the spoken words "Start my car". Other commands can locate your car, lock its doors, honk its horn, flash the lights, and call for roadside assistance. As long as you have an internet connection, you'll be able to execute these commands from anywhere in the US.

The remote control that this app offers you may prove incredibly useful. A locked car is no longer inaccessible if you've lost your keys—the phrase "Unlock my car," spoken into the Blue Link app, will get you in.

As with any good smart app, Blue Link has potential to add flexibility to your routine. Owners will be able to start downloading it in the first quarter of 2015.

Hyundai is also making strides when it comes to infotainment. Certain new models will ditch the CD player and gain a 7-inch high resolution LCD screen. Titled the Display Audio, this system will be able to interface with both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Highlighted features include voice-to-text compatibility, music streaming, and phone-based navigation apps–all of which can be used hands-free.

What sets Display Audio apart from other infotainment systems is how open it is. Hyundai has completely let go of the reins and given control over to your smart phone. That means you run navigation off an app on your phone and rely on your phone's data plan for streaming audio, for instance. It promises to make infotainment less expensive and easier to update, since the heavy lifting happens on the phone that's in your pocket, not on the dashboard.

Display Audio will be offered on select models in 2016.