By Mark Kleis
Friday, Feb 18th, 2011 @ 8:05 am
 
With states banning the use of hand-held cellular phones while operating motor vehicles, along with the increased need of constant connectivity for many phone users, automakers have been forced into the electronics industry as they attempt to adapt and deliver cutting edge infotainment systems that allow owners to integrate their mobile phone and media player experiences seamlessly into their vehicles.

While Ford's Sync (and now MyFord Touch) is considered the gold standard of infotainment systems in the industry, many players have recently revealed their own flavor of Sync, with Chevy's all-new MyLink being the latest.

Chevy MyLink is set to first debut on the 2012 Chevy Volt and 2012 Equinox later this year, giving GM vehicle owners a truly complete infotainment system for the first time ever. MyLink will allow users to sync their mobile devices to the vehicle wirelessly via Bluetooth, as well as integrate online services such as Pandora internet radio, or Stitcher SmartRadio, all controllable with either a touch-screen or voice controls.

"Chevrolet MyLink is the next logical step for in-vehicle connectivity," said Karl Stracke, vice president for global product engineering for Chevrolet. "MyLink leverages the mobile broadband capability and the sophisticated, online services made possible by today's smart phones."

The MyLink system uses a seven-inch touch-screen display, as well as other advanced technologies such as Gracenote, which identifies songs from either a smartphone or mp3 player and automatically adds artist name, genre and album art on the MyLink screen. Gracenote also allows for advanced search functions, such as searching for artists by nicknames, not just the precise names used on the track's data.

While the Chevy MyLink system has only been announced for the 2012 Volt and Equinox, expect the technology to spread across the brand as quickly as the automaker can implement the changes into its pricing and manufacturing structures.