You’re thinking what on earth do a Fiat 500 and Microsoft have in common?
That’s a good question and one, which I didn’t know the answer to until a little yellow Fiat 500 arrived, with what Microsoft claim is the “real” in-car hands free solution.
It’s called Blue&Me and is a unique in-car Bluetooth system that uses Microsoft Windows technology to access both music and mobile phone functions, without the need to ever pick up your phone.
But not any phone, you’ll need to get hold of a Windows enabled phone, before any of this technology can work.
The partner of choice for this demonstration was the Fiat 500, with a 1.4-litre engine with a lazy 74kW and peak torque at 131Nm.
It only weighs 930 kilograms, so performance is not too bad with top speed of 182km/h and the 0-100 dash in a respectable 10.7 seconds.
It’s hard not to like Fiat’s 500, especially in this colour, it really is a very cool set of wheels for those wanting Italian style and flair, in a micro-economy package.
The HTC Touch Diamond phone is undoubtedly a stylish looking unit, it looks and feels better than an iPhone, but the fact that this Bluetooth system is currently available with this handset alone, is somewhat restrictive.
Once connected via a USB connection port in your car, you are prompted by a series of voice commands, which allow you to select either music or dial anyone in your contacts list, which you have conveniently downloaded from your PC.
Does it work? Quite well in fact, especially given that you never need to pick up or look at your mobile phone to access music or phonebook.
However, while it might be more advanced than your standard in car Bluetooth phone system, I wouldn’t call it ground breaking.
Perhaps I was expecting more from this Windows based technology, like being able to surf the web on a nice big LCD screen in the car.
With laptop power anywhere from 4GB of memory and more than 300GB of storage, I would have thought surfing the web via your in-car wide screen LCD would be more than possible in this day and age.