Notable — a tech blog which says it’s “designed for young professionals by young professionals” — recently took a closer look at iLane and, in the end, offered some interesting (and generally positive) insights on the product.
“The iLane platform is entirely voice controlled, which means that by uttering commands like ‘Browse’ or ‘Next Message,’ you can scroll between emails and have them read to you without ever having to take your hands off the wheel,” Notable says.
“The iLane is convenient because it constantly talks to you as well as listens, letting you know all the available voice commands at your disposal depending on the menu you’re in. You can interrupt it with new commands while it’s talking, including calling your boss or colleagues, and if you want it to stop talking entirely you can switch it to ‘Do Not Disturb’ mode.”
Notable then goes on to mention iLane features that allow a user to flip through their virtual calendar and application library all with voice commands. And the blog is most definitely right when saying that the basic concept is “useful considering Ontario’s ban on phoning and texting while driving remains in full effect.” That ban continues to spread beyond Ontario, however, and has been picked up across a number of U.S. states and Canadian provinces.
Notable also mentions some concern over iLane’s $149 price tag and monthly subscription fee, but notes that “time will always add continual improvements…” Certainly Intelligent Mechatronic Systems, which produces the iLane, would agree. After all, the device has received a number of updates and a major redesign since it first emerged several years ago. Even more improvements to the system are expected this summer, which IMS hinted at in a recent press release announcing its partnership with True Wireless, a leading U.S.-based wireless management and solutions provider.
“Currently, iLane is compatible with BlackBerry devices, but look for all new compatibility summer 2011, which will bring the power of voice interactive apps to Android devices as well,” IMS says. “With Google’s open source Smartphone platform getting the iLane treatment, Android users will be able to access services safely from the driver’s seat.”
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