Reuters reported that General Motors Co and OnStar is testing a voice-to-text and text-to-voice feature for its in-car communications system that allow subscribers to update their Facebook status verbally and to receive text messages audibly. Meaning drivers will be given an access the social networking site through speech recognition and text messages will be converted to audible messages.
As of now, OnStar service provides accident alerts, driving directions, vehicle diagnostics, and emergency roadside assistance. It’s available on around 30 vehicle models, and costs between $200 and $300 a year, although the first year’s usually free after a new car purchase. The system currently has around 5.7 million users.
Reportedly, GM is currently finalizing the technology that would allow users to make status updates and listen to recent news feed messages from Facebook while on the move. There are also reports that the company is also integrating the user’s cellphone to the OnStar system via Bluetooth that will allow users to make hands-free call and listen to text messages. Users will also be allow to reply by clicking a button on attached on the steering wheel and using voice commands to select one of four pre-set replies.
Experts believe that the voice command Facebook application will reborn the issue once again of how distracted drivers become when they use technology in their cars. Texting and cell phone use while driving has caused numerous accidents and are now restricted by law in majority of the states.