Auto Tech

Control your VW from your phone or watch, thanks to Siri Shortcuts

Why bother tapping when you can just talk instead?

If you want VW's new Siri Shortcuts to work with your Apple device, you'll need to pony up the dough for a Car-Net subscription.

Volkswagen

Debuting as part of iOS 12, Shortcuts allows Siri to handle more complex tasks like checking price histories on Amazon or converting a video to GIF. And thanks to Volkswagen, Shortcuts is coming to the connected car.

Volkswagen announced today that its Car-Net connected-car app now works with Siri in two ways. The first uses Siri more traditionally. Once you log in to the Car-Net app, you can call up Siri to handle a number of tasks that would normally require tapping through an app. Owners can lock and unlock the car, check how much fuel they have left, flash the brights or honk the horn.

The second way involves the use of Siri Shortcuts. Owners can create personalized phrases that will trigger different events, whether it's locating a parked car, stopping or starting EV charging, turning on the defroster or setting the climate inside the vehicle.

"We are constantly looking at innovative ways to make VW Car-Net more convenient and relevant for our customers," Abdallah Shanti, global CIO for Volkswagen, said in a statement. "With Siri Shortcuts, creating voice commands to use with our mobile app was a great opportunity to do just that. Integration with Siri helps our drivers keep eyes on the road and hands on the wheel." 

Volkswagen's infotainment system already offers Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, as well as its Car-Net connected-car system, which requires an annual subscription. Car-Net offers more than just an app that lets you unlock the doors; it will let you set speed and boundary alerts for teen drivers, in addition to traditional connected-car features like automatic crash notification, roadside assistance and stolen vehicle assistance. Car-Net costs $199 per year, but owners can spring for a $17.99 monthly subscription if they're on the fence about its usefulness.

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