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Making Cars and Smart Phones Friendly

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"I want to make sure your phone and car aren’t enemies,” says Tejas Desai, head of electronics for Continental (conti-online.com). Just like the technology that allows two Android smart phone users to share data by tapping their phones together, Conti deploys the near field communication (NFC) protocol; when a phone is brought into a car an NFC reader instantly initiates a Bluetooth connection. Desai’s team also designed an instrument cluster that displays things like incoming calls and navigation, picking up the information and apps from the phone. And to make sure phone batteries remain charged, Conti developed a wireless charger for the center console. These prototypes could begin to appear in production models in the next few years, Desai says.