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Maruti Suzuki has launched a new SmartPlay Dock System to improve the infotainment in lower variants of its cars. The new Maruti Suzuki SmartPlay Dock System consists of a phone mount, the basic Maruti Suzuki music system with bluetooth and the user's smartphone.
The smartphone can be paired to the system via the SmartPlay Dock app. Touchscreen infotainment units in cars are less of a luxury and more of a requirement these days. Almost all manufacturers offer touchscreen infotainment units in almost all of their cars.
However, it just does not work out in terms of the costs for manufacturers like Maruti Suzuki to offer these systems on the lower variants of its small cars like the Alto 800, WagonR, Celerio, etc.
A basic aftermarket touchscreen unit costs about Rs 7,000. If an OEM supplies it to Maruti Suzuki, it would probably cost around Rs 6,000. Whereas a normal music system would barely cost the company Rs 1,500 to install it in base variants of their cars.
This way, the overall price of the car too remains low. Maruti Suzuki though did not leave it at that. The largest car manufacturer in India wanted to provide premium infotainment even to those who buy lower variants of their small cars.
In-fact these are the buyers who actually bring in the sales numbers and profits for Maruti Suzuki. The solution was the SmartPlay Dock System. Every single person who owns a car, also owns some sort of a smartphone. Maruti Suzuki banked on this fact and developed the SmartPlay Dock System.
The design of the system may have been influenced by a particular aftermarket music system manufacturer. Using the Maruti Suzuki SmartPlay Dock System is pretty simple.
Maruti Suzuki has developed a SmartPlay Dock app that has been made available on Google Play Store as well as Apple App Store. Once this app is downloaded, the user has to register by entering the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) and Registration Number.
The user can then pair the phone to the music system in the car via bluetooth and dock the phone on the phone mount horizontally.
The homescreen of the app is designed to look exactly like the SmartPlay infotainment system on bigger, high-end Maruti Suzuki cars. It features easy to read tabs for Music, Contacts, Navigation & Assist.
The user can play music via the USB port of the car, or via FM, AM and even from a third party app installed on the phone. Under the assist tab, the user can get updates on vehicle stats like engine RPM, driving range, instant fuel economy, average fuel economy, last few trips fuel economy, etc.
One can even get alerts for parking brake engaged, seatbelt unfastened, door open, low fuel, etc. The app will also allow one to send messages, read messages, make calls and receive calls. Under the Navigation tab, the user has easy access to Google Maps.
Thoughts On Maruti Suzuki SmartPlay Dock Using Your Smartphone As An Infotainment Display
Maruti Suzuki is known as one of the few manufacturers who actually caters to the customers needs, especially at the lower end of the automotive spectrum. With the new SmartPlay Dock System, even owners of entry-level cars will be able to get a premium feel of a touchscreen system.