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BMW, Fiat join Connected Car Consortium

Smartphone, meet in-car system

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Fiat and BMW have joined the Car Connectivity Consortium, a body developing a standard scheme for linking smartphones to in-car entertainment and navigation systems that already numbers Daimler, GM, Honda, Hyundai, Toyota and VW among its members.

The group will promote the so-called "Terminal Mode standard" - a Nokia-developed specification for phone-to-car communications.

Terminal Mode was formerly renamed MirrorLink in October as the name under which the technology will be taken to market.

MirrorLink logo

MirrorLink auto-connects smartphone to a car's and hi-fi to allow handsfree calling. The phone's display is mirrored on the dashboard screen. Tap the display or flick a control, and the commanded is routed to and performed on the smartphone.

Phone-car links can operate over USB or Wi-Fi. Bluetooth is also supported but seemingly not favoured these days.

MirrorLink 1.0.1 is available to manufacturers now - version 1.1 is in the pipeline. The first products are expected in 2012.

The CCC's other members include in-car kit makers and phone firms, including Alpine, Clarion, Denso, Garmin, HTC, KDDI, LG, Mitsubishi, Motorola Mobility, Nokia, Panasonic, Samsung, Sony and Sony Ericsson. ®

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