SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Kevin Benedict, Gilad Parann-Nissany

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HARMAN Enables Connectivity across Daimler Vehicles

HARMAN, the premium global audio and infotainment group (NYSE:HAR), has reaped new awards from Daimler to equip Daimler vehicles with advanced connectivity. In a major new telematics project, HARMAN was selected by Daimler to develop and implement the next-generation telematics control unit (TCU), the integrated on-board telematics and infotainment unit connecting cars to the Daimler intelligent traffic management centers. This was followed by an award to install Micro-Electrical-Mechanical System (MEMS) microphones in Daimler vehicles – the first time that microphones with MEMS technology have been used by HARMAN in the automotive sector. The two awards are the latest in a long partnership of innovation between the companies. Terms of the contracts were not disclosed.

“We are proud to continue our long-standing alliance with Daimler AG – a partnership that goes back to 1949, when Becker provided the first audio system to Mercedes-Benz,” said Dinesh C. Paliwal, Chairman, president and CEO of HARMAN. “The latest awards for enhanced telematics followed by MEMS microphones validate the confidence HARMAN has earned to deliver superior technologies that drivers expect in a Daimler vehicle. We look forward to working with Daimler to take these exciting new innovations ’on the road’.”

Telematics for advanced safety

With vehicle communications technology – of which telematics is a key element – promising to help prevent accidents, save lives, reduce CO2 emissions and improve traffic flow on congested roads in the years ahead, this is an arena offering both Daimler and HARMAN the potential for high volume business. The use of telematics systems is expected to grow significantly in the automotive industry, with most infotainment-employing vehicles also offering high-speed telematics from 2016 onwards. As second-generation HARMAN telematics technology, the TCU offers high-speed connectivity via LTE and state-of-the-art network security technologies for secure, convenient Internet access, and a wide range of safety features including eCall (automated calls from the car to bring rapid assistance to motorists involved in a collision). The system is also field-upgradeable to ensure compatibility with the latest telematics protocols and specifications. In conjunction with the Daimler telematics platform, the TCU system by HARMAN will make for a safer, more enjoyable driving experience.

Voice control with MEMS microphones

As cars become ever more connected, voice control is becoming increasingly important as a way for drivers to interact with in-vehicle systems. The microphones with MEMS technology, due to be installed in E- and C-Class Mercedes, with S-Class to follow, demonstrate the commitment of Daimler and HARMAN to innovation in every component in the infotainment system. The MEMS microphones deliver the advantage of a small form factor and superior audio sensitivity into vehicles. What makes them such a good fit for advanced in-vehicle connectivity is that they are fully directional and able to discern who is speaking and from what direction – this is vital to enable one-shot voice commands from drivers to be understood promptly and accurately. Two MEMS microphones will be installed per vehicle, one above the driver’s seat, the other above the passenger’s seat. Being so small, MEMS microphones can be installed behind the roofliner, enabling highly accurate, hands-free voice control of a phone and vehicle infotainment and navigation systems. The MEMS microphones replace the present microphones which are currently installed in the inside mirrors. Like the TCU, the new microphones will be installed in the first Daimler vehicles for 2016.

HARMAN at CES 2014

Visit HARMAN during CES 2014 at its showcase located at the Hard Rock Hotel for a demonstration of HARMAN’s full portfolio of infotainment, in-car audio and Lifestyle portable systems. Follow HARMAN online during CES 2014:

About HARMAN

HARMAN designs, manufactures, and markets a wide range of infotainment and audio solutions for the automotive, consumer, and professional markets. It is a recognized world leader across its customer segments with premium brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon®, and Mark Levinson® and leading-edge connectivity, safety and audio technologies. The company is admired by audiophiles across multiple generations and supports leading professional entertainers and the venues where they perform. More than 25 million automobiles on the road today are equipped with HARMAN audio and infotainment systems. HARMAN has a workforce of about 14,600 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $4.5 billion for the twelve months ended September 30, 2013. The company’s shares are traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol NYSE:HAR. Please visit www.harman.com for more information.

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© 2014 HARMAN International Industries, Incorporated. All rights reserved. Harman Kardon, Infinity, JBL, Lexicon and Mark Levinson are trademarks of HARMAN International Industries, Incorporated, registered in the United States and/or other countries. AKG is a trademark of AKG Acoustics GmbH, registered in the United States and/or other countries. Features, specifications and appearance are subject to change without notice.

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