GM Introduces IntelliLink Telematics Feature for Buick and GMC Vehicles
2012 Buick Verano
2012 Buick LaCrosse
2012 Buick Regal GS
General Motors has ported over the high tech features found in the Chevrolet MyLink system to vehicles built by both Buick and GMC. Chevrolet MyLink, which was initially developed as a Ford SYNC-fighter, will be known under the name of 'IntelliLink' across the Buick and GMC lineups.
What exactly do Buick IntelliLink and GMC IntelliLink bring to the table? Essentially, each of these systems mirrors the functionality found in the MyLink system, which is to say that it serves as a complement to GM's existing OnStar features. Primarily, IntelliLink has been designed to match the smart phone and data network integration capabilities that have given Ford SYNC such a lead in the onboard informatics market. Drivers will be able to connect their smart phones to the IntelliLink system either wirelessly using Bluetooth, or via a USB connection. Mobile devices can then be controlled using both voice commands and steering wheel controls, with a phone's features linking to the up to eight-inch full color screens offered by Buick and GMC cars and trucks. For drivers who would prefer to connect other devices to the IntelliLink system, Bluetooth and USB integration is also offered for portable media players and simple portable USB flash drives.
What else does IntelliLink bring to the table beyond its mobile device integration capabilities? The system provides drivers with a more advanced voice command system, known as Nuance, which enables full control over the vehicle's entertainment and communications systems. GM has been quick to point out that the time Buick has spent refining the sound proofing in its automobiles has paid dividends when it comes to improving the ability of Nuance to accurately process the human voice. IntelliLink also offers two Internet radio apps, PANDORA and Stitcher SmartRadio, which can connect to live music feeds via the online connection of an integrated smart phone, as well as the Gracenote service, which automatically ID's music files that have been loaded into IntelliLink and provides extensive information about each album and track.
The roll-out of IntelliLink across more of the GM lineup is an important step for the domestic automaker, and the ability for the system to be updated via simple software patches is also a plus in terms of helping to ensure that its features keep up with SYNC over the long term. Buick customers will see the greatest number of vehicles offering IntelliLink for the 2012 model year, with the upcoming Buick Verano, the Buick Regal, and the Buick LaCrosse all gaining the feature. The Buick Enclave crossover will be joining the list of IntelliLink-enabled vehicles in 2013. As for GMC, currently only the 2012 GMC Terrain crossover has been tapped to benefit from IntelliLink, although it seems likely that other trucks and SUVs offered by the brand will also eventually count the technology as standard equipment.