If you’ve lost your phone between your car seats trying to get directions, reply to a message, or make a phone call, you may need a better companion while driving. Yes, we all know what “Hey, Siri” and “OK, Google” is, but that’s simply not something that works every time. And if your car doesn’t have CarPlay, what other options do you have?
Chris is your digital co-driver with artificial intelligence. It’s a stand-alone device that includes an app that let’s you configure Chris’s settings by your smartphone via Bluetooth, which you can then put away for the drive.
Designed for drivers, Chris is a no-touch gadget that combines speech recognition with convenient hand gesture control. With a color screen, all important information can be seen at a glance. It listens to you and talks to you like a friend, and the more you interact with it, the better it is at helping you.
As far as user experience goes, Chris actively lets you know when you have a new message or if there is a faster route to your destination. After a few times of using it, you can get in the car and Chris will ask you if you are going to work. You’ll never need to waste time with mapping directions after this is installed onto your dashboard or windshield.
Chris will read messages out loud to you and will ask you how you’d like to respond, all without taking your hands off the wheel. Similarly, you can do the same with phone calls. If you ask to call a name where more than one exists in your contacts, Chris will ask you to swipe not by touching, but by flicking through (in front of it) the contacts found. Additional features include playing music from Spotify, Apple Music, and more, each operated by voice and hand gestures. In regards to navigation, you don’t need to worry if your phone signal is weak, as it works offline if need be.
Installation is simple. Just place Chris on the dashboard or on the windshield using the suction cup mount and follow the setup instructions. Once you connect it to your smartphone and car audio, you’re done. It works in any car and with any iOS or Android device.
Pricing starts at about $190 to pre-order and begins delivering this December.