Get ready for a new generation of upgraded infotainment systems set to be rolled out across all of Skoda’s vehicles, ushering a new era of infotainment and connectivity like never before.
Skoda recently announced that new infotainment systems are being introduced into its flagship Superb as well as its Karoq and Kodiaq SUVs for the start of the 2021 model year. The range of infotainment functions in the Skoda Scala and Kamiq compact models is also being expanded and upgraded accordingly.
Based on the Volkswagen Group’s third-generation modular infotainment matrix, the new infotainment offerings include state-of-the-art technology, innovative applications and mobile services. Some notable features include a digital voice assistant called Laura, a built in e-SIM, more advanced personalisation settings, Internet radio, wireless SmartLink+ technology and more.
Let’s take a look at some of what we can expect.
Introducing Laura and the Possibilities of the Internet
Thanks to a built-in eSIM, the infotainment systems will feature permanent internet connection across the board (except for the base 6.5-inch touchscreen display), opening up the world of online services and applications.
Map and software updates or on-demand functions such as navigation can now be received and downloaded ‘over the air’ (OTA). With data allowance provided through Skoda, you don’t have to worry about using up your mobile quota.
Your destination can also be transferred directly from the Skoda Connect app to the sat-nav system. From there you can get useful real-time information like traffic warnings, route calculations, and finding nearby petrol or charging stations, or the closest available parking spot.
Keep up-to-date with access to news feeds and weather reports, and with the new Internet Radio you can listen to your favourite radio show or station, wherever you are.
Through an onboard Shop, customers can select additional data plans, for example to provide passengers with a data allowance via a Wi-Fi hotspot.
With Amundsen and Columbus systems, a Skoda ID account can now be created directly from the vehicle; with the relevant Internet availability.
And all the navigation, infotainment and telephony services can all be operated hands-free with the help of Laura, Skoda’s digital voice assistant. Just as you have Siri on your phone and Alexa at home, Laura is your friend while behind the wheel of a Skoda. Laura can understand and process fluently spoken sentences in as many as 15 different languages such as English, Czech, French, German, Italian and Spanish.
In addition, SmartLink+ technology that allows you to pair your smartphone using Apple CarPlay / Android Auto / MirrorLink wirelessly to your Skoda. No messy cables.
Bigger screens and USB-C
Aside from all the wonderful software features, some physical upgrades have also been made, such as larger standard touchscreens. The Bolero infotainment and Amundsen navigation systems each now come with an 8-inch touchscreen, while the top-of-the-range Columbus navigation variant boasts a 9.2-inch screen.
Modern USB-C sockets are now included instead of older USB-A ports, as well as a 230-volt socket in the rear for some models. An optional USB-C slot above the rear-view mirror is also available (conveniently placed to power a dashcam for example).
Keep and transfer your own personal settings
The latest generation of infotainment also offers the option of online personalisation, where you can save your own custom settings your online Skoda Connect account and transfer them into any other Skoda through that account, so no more spending time fiddling with and changing settings every time you change drivers or get into a new car, just download your settings and you’re good to go.
Each car gets up to 14 owner profiles and one guest profile – and each person can save their own preferred settings such as the Virtual Cockpit layout, climate control, driver assistance systems, light settings, and seat and mirror positions to the way they want.