Kia and Microsoft Debut UVO Infotainment System

Kia has just announced a brand new communications and entertainment system developed with Microsoft that will be integrated into several models starting this summer. Codenamed "UVO powered by Microsoft", the system is based on Windows Embedded Auto software and provides a number of functions that rely on voice recognition and hands-free controlling.

For instance, the driver can easily browse among the system's menus without touching the buttons, just by using quick voice commands. Furthermore, it can return answers for a number of questions, such as "What's playing?", but the manufacturer hasn't yet mentioned whether it intends to implement other languages besides English.

"UVO powered by Microsoft is a breakthrough for in-vehicle infotainment that helps allow drivers and passengers to safely and easily use all of their personal technologies to create personalized in-vehicle communications and entertainment experiences," says Michael Sprague, vice president, marketing, KMA. "Collaborating with Microsoft, Kia Motors is able to offer drivers an experience that will provide our cars with a clear competitive advantage."

"We are very excited with the customized approach Kia Motors is bringing to in-car infotainment," says Kevin Dallas, General Manager of Microsoft's Windows Embedded Business division. "Kia's UVO system demonstrates how the power of Windows Embedded technology can keep consumers connected to the devices, information and entertainment that matters to them most."

Technically speaking, the system comprises a 4.3-inch full-color display that provides various data, such as media content, phonebook and vehicle information. Additionally, it can act as a rear-view camera once the gear stick is shifted in reverse.

The technology will be demonstrated for the first time at the 2010 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, January 7-10, in both the Kia Motors and Microsoft booths. It will be integrated in the all-new 2011 Kia Sorento this summer and will be then offered on several Kia models.
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About the author: Bogdan Popa
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Bogdan keeps an eye on how technology is taking over the car world. His long-term goals are buying an 18-wheeler because he needs more space for his kid’s toys, and convincing Google and Apple that Android Auto and CarPlay deserve at least as much attention as their phones.
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