November 04, 2009, 12:00 AM — As a 2010 Toyota Prius, it may not be the fastest car on the road. On the other hand, it just might be fastest from a data connectivity perspective. It comes with built-in Long Term Evolution (LTE) mobile broadband connectivity, which enables speeds of 100 Mbps or more (more than four times the speed of 3G).
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The LTE Connected Car was unveiled today by a consortium of companies called nG Connect. The project is a collaboration between Alcatel-Lucent, Toyota, Atlantic Records, Chumby, Kabillion and QNX.
The fast wireless connection is designed to give the car driving-specific content, including "advanced navigation," vehicle safety, car diagnostics and hands-free communication. Sensors built into the car provide detailed information about road conditions, including icing on the road.
Information about road conditions, as well as sudden slow-downs and even a forward-facing video camera feed built into the rear-view mirror can be beamed to other compatible cars down the road. The camera streaming is controlled by the driver, who may choose to essentially broadcast video information just as a friendly warning of what's ahead.
The car also provides entertainment for passengers, including a network-based home-control system that enables the downloading into the car of movies stored on the home DVR. Back-seat passengers get video-on-demand, gaming, music, social networking access and other Web applications. The car is also a Wi-Fi hotspot, so anyone with a smart phone or laptop can connect to the network as well.
The car concept includes access to home systems, including security system and control of appliances like air conditioning, lights and so on.
While the car is a concept, partners expect it all to become available from Toyota within three years.
Oh, boy, do I want one!