Automotive

Dacia system uses your smartphone as the car's infotainment screen

Dacia system uses your smartph...
The Media Control system replaces a built-in infotainment screen with the driver's own smartphone
The Media Control system replaces a built-in infotainment screen with the driver's own smartphone
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Along with the playback of music, Media Control can also be utilized for tasks like taking and placing phone calls, consulting a daily planner calendar, or using a satellite navigation system
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Along with the playback of music, Media Control can also be utilized for tasks like taking and placing phone calls, consulting a daily planner calendar, or using a satellite navigation system
The Media Control docking station shuts flush with the dash when not in use
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The Media Control docking station shuts flush with the dash when not in use
The Media Control system replaces a built-in infotainment screen with the driver's own smartphone
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The Media Control system replaces a built-in infotainment screen with the driver's own smartphone
View gallery - 3 images

Many cars now feature touchscreen-controlled infotainment systems, but … why pay for a dashboard-integrated screen, when you've already got one on your phone? That's the thinking behind Dacia's new phone-based Media Control system.

Debuting in the latest version of the Dacia Sandero, Media Control is centered around an iOS/Android app and an adjustable-size phone docking station in the dash. That receptacle holds the phone firmly in landscape mode while the vehicle is motion, and its cover shuts flush with the dashboard surface when the phone is removed.

The app communicates with the car's onboard electronics via Bluetooth, linking the phone with the vehicle's radio, dual speakers, and USB port. Drivers can access infotainment functions directly through the phone's customizable touchscreen display, verbally via the phone's voice control system, or through the car's steering wheel button controls (which are also linked).

The Media Control docking station shuts flush with the dash when not in use
The Media Control docking station shuts flush with the dash when not in use

The smartphone interface can of course be used to play music – from the radio, the phone's library, a streaming service, or a peripheral such as a USB stick. It can also be utilized for tasks like taking and placing phone calls, consulting a daily planner calendar, or using a satellite navigation system.

Additionally, because the app is linked to the car's onboard computer, it can show users the vehicle's real-time fuel consumption, current speed, distance travelled, and the operational status of the engine.

And finally, if the driver should try to leave the car without their phone, an alert will sound, reminding them to grab it.

The Media Control system is demonstrated in the following video.

Source: Groupe Renault

The New Dacia Sandero: the screen comes out of your pocket | Groupe Renault

View gallery - 3 images
8 comments
8 comments
Chase
This is awesome, though I would like to see the option to put the phone in portrait mode instead. I prefer portrait mode for maps, which is the only reason I care to have a screen in my dash at all.
Mike Trites
I can see why some people might like this, but a lot of people would rather have a separate touch-screen so they can continue to use their phone for things like calls and google maps. Which of course, they are technically not supposed to do, but many people do anyway.
Martin Hone
And we wonder why the are 'accidents' !
paul314
Can this just fit phones, or tablets as well? (And if you root your phone, does that mean you can ultimately hack your car?)
moreover
When I bought my Chevy Bolt EV I was surprised to see that there's no navigation system. Instead you connect your phone via USB and CarPlay to see the map on the big built-in screen.
lee54
My truck didn't come with a infotainment system (1954 Chevy 3100), so I just put a magnetic mount on the dash for the iPhone, and a USB charger in the cigarette lighter to keep it charged. Google maps or Mapquest works for driving directions, and I have Spotify and Bluetooth for music. The screen is a little small though, and the sound system ain't the greatest. I could go with earbuds, I guess.
jerryd
I like this because every 3 yrs you get the newest tech vs in 6 yrs a lot of the in car tech will be obsolete.
Plus who wants to pay 2x for the same service?
ReservoirPup
Sure the idea will live on, with the next implementations allowing a bigger phone or a tablet to fit in.