How was the iDrive system?
Hello, well I had the luxury of playing around on about 50 different computer based OEM systems today. Benz, Bmw, Cadillac, GMC, Lexus, played with them all. Nav/FM/am/dvd/etc I went through them all. How you ask? I have a cash side job doing valet parking at a yacht club. I've even been playing with some 1st gen systems that were on the late 90's 7 series BMW's. For everyone that thinks the VIA's are slow try some oem systems, my VIA blows tham all away. Its funny amongst all the high end autos I drove tonight my stang has the nicest/fastest computer driven audio/gps system. The worst system i used was the crossfire. GPS was terriable. Also im not to fond of the brand new STS system. The GUI looks very uncreative and it has like 8 square buttons, do you really need a computer to handle 8 buttons? Nicest system was by far the lexus. It controls so many parts of the car I actually got lost in the depth/complexity of the system.
Anyway my main question is what software do OEM's use? The interfaces on most of them look very 'motif' which makes me believe they are a *nix base. They also shutdown instant, as in you pull the key and they are off. Im really curious the software specs and or hardware specs of these systems. Im off to google but if anyone has any knowledge on the subject please share.
Most OEM systems use QNX as the operating system. The NAV is built on top of that by other 3rd party companies.
My better half has a Fiat Stilo about 2 years old with a Blaupunkt-branded OEM system; it runs Windows CE. It also has 30 hard buttons, two rotary encoders, and The. Worst. UI. Ever. The whole thing looks like a Windows 3.0 shareware app from 1996 and they've tried to emulate a physical radio, so even though it has a huge screen, the names of songs in MP3 mode are limited to 8 characters that scroll in a little virtual window in the corner. It has an Intel ARM processor and boots and runs from flash.
It was thinking about how to replace the software on this thing that first led me to mp3car.
Just wanted to point you guys to this thread, in case you had the chance to take pics...
blk02si: how about you take your digital camera to work and snap a few good pics of the best interfaces (Lexus etc).
I believe that iDrive uses WinCE as do many of the more recent systems. I've played with a recent Lexus one at the last Tokyo Motor Show in a new IS. It was pretty complex, but interface was simple... and dull. I also wouldn't be surprised if it ran on CE. Microsoft has been pushing it quite a bit in this arena.
Clarion uses a *nix derrived system they developed on their own. I'm not sure about Alpine. I am pretty sure that Pioneer uses WinCE. Not sure about Kenwood.
Ah... here's more info from another thread on Windows Automotive...
Microsoft Releases Windows Automotive 5.0
So it turns out that Alpine, Kenwood and Pioneer are all using WinCE...