After a series of rapid-fire announcements, it appears that automakers are becoming more focused on wearable integration. As the infotainment battle rages on, the auto makers are bringing it to your faces and wrists. Hyundai, Mercedes-Benz, BMW, and Nissan have all recently announced some sort of in-vehicle wearable device integration, and one of the auto makers has even launched its own smartwatch. The wearable market, not the smartphone market, will be one of the most important segments for automakers for the next several years. According to ABI Research, by 2019, more than 90% of new vehicles will interface with wearable computers.1


Nissan Smartwatch Nismo

Let’s begin with the smartwatches. Nissan is in the process of rolling out its very own smartwatch, the Nissan Nismo Watch (pictured right). This new watch, however, shouldn’t be confused with the Pebble or Galaxy Gear, as it is hyper-focused on the users car. Among the features, the Nismo will:

  • monitor the efficiency of their vehicle with average speed and fuel consumption readings;
  • access vehicle telematics and performance data while on track;
  • capture biometric data via a heart rate monitor;
  • connect to the car using a smartphone app via Bluetooth Low Energy;
  • receive tailored car messages from Nissan.2

Here is a short overview of the Nismo Watch:


Benz watchMercedes-Benz, rather than building a product of its own, has partnered with Pebble. We wrote a little bit about the announcement when we heard it at the 2014 International CES:

The Pebble watch will be able to locate your Mercedes. It will also be able to tell the driver how much fuel is remaining. Pebble will also be able to alert the driver to an upcoming road hazard and its buttons can activate a smartphone’s voice control, search for a navigation destination and control audio.


BMW Galaxy GearIn much the same fashion as the Mercedes-Pebble partnership above, BMW has partnered with Samsung to build Galaxy Gear apps and software compatable with the new BMX i3 model. According to a USA Today article on the partnership, the new app/software will work much the same as the Pebble/Benz apps and software:

iRemote App-equipped Galaxy Gear lets i3 drivers check vital vehicle functions—like remaining range—at a glance, without taking out a phone or opening an app. Tap on the Galaxy Gear’s touch display and you’ll get access to a sub-menu for turning on the heat or AC, or checking if windows are open or closed.3

On to Google Glass integrations:


Hyundai Google GlassAlthough several states and the UK have proposed legislation that would ban the use of smart eye-wear while driving, Hyundai and several other auto infotainment companies are moving ahead with apps and software for Google Glass. Hyundai already has a smartphone application to automate and/or perform many car-related tasks from mobile locations. However, there are several new features included in the company’s Google Glass application. These include, according to Gizmag:

Google-powered destination search, Find My Car, point of interest search, calling roadside assistance and Blue Link agents, locating nearby Hyundai dealers, automatic collision notification (ACN) and SOS emergency assistance, remote vehicle start (with engine timer), remote stop, remote locking/unlocking, remote climate control and remote defroster.4

This will be an interesting trend to follow in the coming years. Will smartwatches or Google Glass reign supreme in the auto?