In an age of Internet-connected cars, there are lots of Dick Tracy-style things people can do in their vehicles. Now, if you’re a customer of one car company, you can add taking a conference call to the list.
Swedish car maker Volvo is introducing Skype for Business to its new 90 Series cars, a move claimed to be the first time a carmaker has included the Microsoft Corp. owned productivity tool. The inclusion of Skype for Business is being pitched as an easier way to take a conference call while driving.
“We’ve all been there. Sitting in the car trying to join a conference call. You either fumble with or drop your phone while trying to connect or you forget the long pin code to join,” Volvo Vice President Consumer Connectivity Services Anders Tylman-Mikiewicz said in a statement. “It’s not the best way to start an important call in the car. On top of all that your attention is not where it should be – on the road. With the addition of Skype for Business all that goes away.”
The integration allows drivers to view their upcoming meetings and participant details, as well as join calls via a shortcut so that they will not be required to enter a pin code to join a call. “Skype for Business represents another big step forward for our in-car connectivity and communication offer,” Tylman-Mikiewicz added. “With the dawn of autonomous cars we see a future where flexible in-car productivity tools will enable people to reduce time spent in the office. This is just the beginning of a completely new way of looking at how we spend time in the car.”
The announcement that Skype for Business is to be integrated into the 90 series Volvo may be the first step in a blossoming relationship between the car maker and Microsoft. The software giant said it’s exploring integrating Cortana into their vehicles to add “seamless voice recognition and contextual insights to support peoples’ daily lives.”