Kia Motors claimed that the automaker would be offering artificial intelligence (A.I.), or at the very least smart devices in their vehicles by the end of 2019, 2020. So far, we haven’t seen any inclination of this since 2018, when Kia Motors announced a new contract with SoundHound, a speech and audio recognition company working on voice-recognition technologies. With all the talk about the Kia Seltos and its success, as usual, Kia Motors intends to test new technology on an already successful model. The automaker did the same, testing possibly the first phase of their separate sound zone technology in the Kia Telluride after the SUV spearheaded sales in March 2019.
Kia Motors, through the Hyundai Motor Group which it’s a part of, has a contract with SoundHound. Through this contract, the three are working on creating an Intelligent Personal Agent, or a smart device, but for automobiles. Like a smart device, the IPA (hah) can make suggestions and offer consumers remote control of both their car and home. SoudnHound even has a retail market device that is basically an Amazon Alexa clone, so nothing ground-breaking just yet.
The difference here is that the Intelligent Personal Agent by SoundHound will support “multiple-command recognition”. In other words, the smart device can do two things or more at once like, “Turn on the alarm, turn off the bedroom lights, and start the car” all while you’re on your way out the door. Nifty, eh?
It’s all in theory, but that’s where the Kia Seltos comes in. With its recent success, Kia has decided to put its contract with SoundHound to use. Powered by SoundHound Inc.’s Houndify voice AI platform, Kia Seltos drivers will be able to speak with their vehicle in their natural voice, as one would do with a smart device. A consumer can say something as simple as “Change the temperature to 70°F”, and the vehicle will respond accordingly.
Through the use of Houndify, Kia Seltos drivers will be able to:
- Search in real-time for locations of interest
- Ask about the weather, date, and time
- Make a phone call
- Control the car’s media and navigation
- Use in-car climate controls to adjust the temperature and fan speeds
More features will most likely be released over time. At the moment, there’s a mix of controls we have in modern vehicles with voice command, such as making a phone call or controlling media. Searching for points of interest while on the road or being able to ask about the weather at a predetermined destination could be beneficial for road trips, but aside from that, Houndify could use a little more work. As we said, this is probably a test of the first phase for the Intelligent Personal Agent by SoundHound on Kia Motors vehicles.
“The Houndify platform is the perfect fit for automotive brands wanting to deliver an innovative, conversational, and personalized voice experience to their drivers…We’re thrilled to continue expanding Houndify’s global presence by partnering with Kia and enhancing the in-car driving experience for their Indian customers.” – Keyvan Mohajer, co-founder & CEO of SoundHound Inc.
Sounds interesting. We’ll continue to follow the news on SoudnHound and their contract with the Hyundai Motor Group and Kia Motors. Follow us on Miami Lakes Kia social media to learn more.