Company advances just one spot
Apple has placed 21st on Fortune's latest annual Best Global Green Brands list. The chart takes the 100 companies from Interbrand's annual Best Global Brands Report and narrows them down to 50, sorting them according to perceived environmental friendliness versus their actual efforts. The sway in one direction or the other is described as a positive or negative gap.
Alliance creating single platform for Android-based in-car systems
Google is pushing to bring Android to cars, confirming recent rumors, though not as a partnership with a single car manufacturer as first thought. The Open Automotive Alliance (OAA), made up of Google, Audi, GM, Honda, Hyundai, and Nvidia, has been formed to create a single common platform for in-car systems, one which it hopes will improve the experience of the driver and passengers on the road.
Display Audio tech requires iPhone 5 or later
The 2014 Civic and the 2015 Fit will each get two forms of iOS integration, Honda has announced. The most significant is Display Audio, which will let users control functions like music, calling, and navigation through gesture controls on a built-in capacitive touchscreen. Connecting will require an iPhone 5, 5s, or 5c, and one or more of four new HondaLink apps: Connect, Navigation, Aha, and Launcher. Aha provides access to Internet audio including radio, podcasts, and audiobooks, plus Twitter and Facebook updates, and listings for nearby points of interest. Launcher is used to find and launch HondaLink-compatible apps. The official Honda apps are all free except for Navigation, which costs $60.
iOS mirroring still limited to 2014 Civic Coupe
Honda has officially launched Siri Eyes Free integration for a handful of vehicles. These include 2013 and 2014 models of the Honda Accord, and 2013 models of the Acura RDX and ILX. Eyes Free lets people trigger Siri through a button on their steering wheel, instead of having to reach for their iPhone to control functions like texting, music playback, or turn-by-turn navigation; it also shuts off the phone's screen to reduce distractions. To get the feature, car owners must pay for a dealer installation.
2014 Honda Civic Coupe to support iOS mirroring
The 2014 Civic Coupe will support iOS mirroring when it becomes available on December 4th, Honda has announced. The car has a 7-inch multi-touch display built into the dash, which people will be able to use to control an iOS device without having to use a mount or reach down. Honda adds that promised Siri Eyes Free updates for its vehicles will also be available in early December.
May integrate with HondaLink and AcuraLink
Honda has announced a slate of 2013 cars that will support Apple's Eyes Free feature for Siri. The technology will come as a dealer-installed option for the new Honda Accord, as well as for the Acura RDX and ILX. On the Accord it may be integrated with the company's new HondaLink console, whereas the Acuras will likely rely on AcuraLink. No prices have been revealed so far.
Honda will be the first automaker to support Aha Radio in 2013 Accord
Honda detailed the HondaLink in-car entertainment system that will debut in the 2013 Accord on Wednesday. The first automaker to use the Aha platform by Harman, it will allow web access to Facebook, Twitter, and other web-based services and news. The HondaLink smartphone app for iOS and Android devices lets users customize content on the phone before they get into the car.
Verizon, five automakers form 4G Venture Forum for Connected Cars
A number of major automakers and telecommunications provider Verizon have joined together to form the 4G Venture Forum for Connected Cars. It aims to develop open standards that will bring 4G LTE systems into vehicles. Car builders who have signed up include BMW, Honda, Hyundai, Kia, and Toyota, with North American companies conspicuously absent.
ASIMO gets key improvements, new arm shown
Honda just brought one of the most significant updates yet for its ASIMO humanoid robot. It now has what Honda calls the world's first autonomous behavior control technology that doesn't require a human operator. This also gave it greater intelligence and the physical ability to adapt to situations.
Audi car to get Google 3D map data, search
Google today revealed that the Audi A8 will be the first regular production car whose GPS system will use Google Earth for data. The implementation will give the luxury sedan Google's 3D terrain data and satellite imagery to provide a more realistic view of driving directions when requested. Importantly, it will also bring some of Google's search features: among the extras will be the ability to push a destination or a business entry to the A8's GPS unit and have directions ready.
Honda's U3-X allows for sideways movement
Honda this week introduced a unique personal mobility device, the U3-X. The device enables the rider to travel in all directions -- touted as a world-first -- with a balancing system that was developed during the human-like ASIMO robot. The ball-like wheel also allows for direct sideways motion, or diagonal movement. Honda calls this its Honda Omni Traction Drive System, or HOT Drive System for short.
Honda walking assist gizmo
Honda Motor on Friday announced it will begin real-world testing of its second experimental walking assist device designed to reduce the strain on a user's leg muscles and joints such as hips, knees and ankles. The device will supporting a portion of user's body weight whether they're crouching, walking or climbing stairs and is meant to help both those physically weakened with age or injury as well as workers who would need to reduce the stress on their bodies from heavy work or unusual positions.