Volvo Car UK is boosting its in-car connectivity offering by fitting a data SIM card as standard to all its new models.
The feature is being introduced on all 2020 model year cars and can be retrofitted to any that have already been delivered to customers.
The SIM card allows the driver and their passengers to be fully connected at all times, with access to 100GB of data for up to one year, making this the longest and most generous Vodafone plan currently offered by a car maker in the UK. The facility is available for the first 12 months for no extra cost on top of the car's initial purchase price.
Operation of the SIM card, which is supported by Vodafone, is independent of any of the occupants' own SIM-equipped devices, so there is no impact on their personal or business data usage, or device's battery charge.
The provision of an integrated SIM card brings multiple benefits in terms of access to entertainment and information apps, Real Time Traffic Information (RTTI) for efficient journey planning, and cutting-edge connected safety services. Users also benefit from a stronger signal while on the move, since reception is through their car's antenna.
The SIM card creates an on-board WiFi hotspot that can be used by up to eight devices. It also gives seamless access to all the native information and entertainment apps that are built into the car's Sensus touchscreen system, including Spotify, TuneIn, Google Local Search, Yelp, Park and Pay, Record & Send, Glympse, Weather and WikiLocation.
It allows Real Time Traffic Information to be gathered and viewed on the navigation screen, and provide efficient re-routing options for programmed journeys. Further convenience is provided by over-the-air updates for the Sensus system's navigation maps and apps.
Automatic roaming covers 42 European countries and overseas territories.
The SIM card also enables alerts to be received and transmitted when a similarly connected (Volvo) car's hazard lights are triggered nearby, or slippery road surfaces are encountered. By sharing information in real time via a cloud-based network, Volvo cars can give drivers early warnings about potentially dangerous conditions ahead, reducing the risk of an accident.