ŠKODA is the world’s first car manufacturer to integrate an app into its infotainment system that prevents drivers going in the wrong direction and alerts them to hazards. New safety features will be added to the app over time.
Safety is always a priority for ŠKODA – and improving safety also means preventing accidents. One tool to help do this is the Traffication Infotainment App, which has been released recently. The app warns drivers of traffic hazards and helps reduce the risk of entering a motorway slip road in the wrong direction. It can be easily downloaded and installed in the operating system of ŠKODA Superb, Scala, Kamiq, Karoq and Kodiaq models equipped with next-generation top-of-the-range infotainment systems and will be made available for other models during the year, when its functionality will also be extended.
“Improving road safety is an essential goal of ŠKODA AUTO. By introducing the Traffication Infotainment App, we are helping once more to make driving safer,” says Michal Vondra, the ŠKODA AUTO product manager for the Traffication Infotainment App.
The ŠKODA digital offering
The new Traffication Infotainment App further expands the digital offering of ŠKODA AUTO. Like other recent additions such as weather forecasting and news apps and the Calendar App and Marketplace App, the new application is available via the Shop, which is accessible from the on-board menu. Here it can be easily downloaded and installed. After installation, the software runs in the background but immediately shows an alert on the central infotainment display when drivers are close to a traffic hazard.
The system also warns drivers if they risk turning into a road against the direction of traffic or if there are stationary vehicles with their hazard warning lights flashing nearby. Currently, information can only be exchanged between ŠKODA models running the Traffication Infotainment App. In the future, however, these warnings will be sent from all new ŠKODA cars fitted with third-generation infotainment systems.
Speed and safety
“The app provides drivers with relevant traffic warnings on an ongoing basis, regardless of whether the navigation system is activated or not,” emphasises Michal Vondra. He goes on to explain that by interacting with the navigator, the app enhances safety without becoming a distraction for drivers.
One of the key features of the Traffication Infotainment App is the speed with which it issues a warning when a driver tries to enter a motorway slip road against the direction of traffic. This is the result of a collaboration with Bosch, which led to the cloud-based wrong-way driver warning appearing in ŠKODA cars. It has been available as a smartphone app since 2018 and is now offered by 25 app partners in Europe. ŠKODA is the first car manufacturer to integrate this function into an infotainment system.
During the course of the year, ŠKODA will add further functions to the Traffication Infotainment App. In the summer, vocal messages about weather and road conditions will be introduced. Drivers will also be able to report hazards themselves and other improvements supported by advanced prediction algorithms will be made.
Due to follow in the fourth quarter of 2021 are additional types of notification and information on drivers’ frequently used routes. “In 2022, we plan to integrate the app with a Car-to-X system that is able to communicate directly with other cars and nearby infrastructure. This will allow immediate receipt of notifications from smart city systems or warnings from nearby emergency vehicles,” Vondra adds.
The app is free to download until the middle of the year, after which it will incur a small annual fee. The Traffication Infotainment App is available from the Shop section of the on-board menu of the Columbus system in the ŠKODA Superb, Kodiaq and Karoq, and the Amundsen system in the ŠKODA Kamiq and Scala. In the third quarter of 2021 it will also be available for the new Fabia and Octavia. It will be added to all other ŠKODA models equipped with top-of-the range systems from the third-generation infotainment system – including the electric Enyaq iV SUV – by the end of the year.