– Honda releases new Bluetooth connectivity for your 2021 motorcycle on Android smart phones! –
Honda just rolled out some interesting new technology for some of their 2021 motorcycles but only in Europe… American Honda has yet to make any announcements on their 2021 motorcycle lineup when it comes to which models will have this tech and which won’t. Honda of Europe only has four models that this is rolling out on and at the time of typing this, none of them are USA spec models. We don’t have the X-ADV, the Forza 350 or 750 in the USA and the CB1000R is a tricky one. Honda just redesigned the 2021 CB1000R, you can find out more here, but this model hasn’t been “officially” announced yet for the USA market. The last production year for the CB1000R in the USA was in 2019, there’s still hope that Honda will release the newly redesigned 2021 CB1000R for the American market but nothing is concrete yet. Why do I say that? Honda isn’t done with their 2021 motorcycle lineup announcements at the time of writing this. Here’s the press release information from Honda and then my opinions below that.
Honda Motor Europe is pleased to announce the availability of its new Honda RoadSync app for motorcycles. The bespoke app works together with Honda’s newly-developed connectivity system for motorcycles and scooters, the Honda Smartphone Voice Control system, to allow riders to take advantage of several of the most useful functions of their Android™ smartphone.
The Honda Smartphone Voice Control system is available as standard fitment on the 2021 X-ADV, CB1000R and Forza 750, and as an option on the Forza 350 scooter. This new system enables riders to control their smartphone using wireless connection via Bluetooth® between their smartphone and their compatible motorcycle or scooter. Having downloaded the Honda RoadSync app, with a paired Android OS smartphone and a Bluetooth® helmet-mounted headset (with audio input), riders will be able to:
- Navigate easily to favorite places and local points of interest
- Make and receive phone calls
- Generate and respond to SMS text messages, as well as other messaging apps
- Listen to music via a favorite streaming app
- Check the day’s local weather forecast, and, when using navigation, the weather forecast of their destination
All functionality of the app is operated through a combination of voice input and a 4-way toggle switch located on the left handlebar, allowing the rider to safely store their smartphone in a pocket and remain fully connected.
Developed by Honda, the Honda RoadSync app will be rolled out across Europe, starting from December 2020 with availability in the UK, with EU countries to follow in 2021. The proprietary Honda technology can be further developed, in the future, by Honda in response to evolving needs of customers.
For full details of the Honda Smartphone Voice Control system and Honda RoadSync app, check out www.honda.co.uk/HondaSmartphoneVoiceControlsystem.
Below are the main details of the functions available on the app:
- Google Maps provides the navigation base for Honda RoadSync. The directions are given to the rider by voice communication. 5 pre-set favorite places can be stored. There is also the option to set a destination through voice commands.
- 5 frequent contacts can be stored; contacts can be selected by voice-search*. For incoming calls, the system voices the name of the caller to the rider.
- There are 5 default Quick Messages stored, which can be changed to personalized messages. Riders can voice-search a contact, then voice-input an SMS message to be sent in text form. Incoming messages are converted to voice feedback. Supported message apps include WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger.
- Riders can pre-select a favorite music app (Google Play Music, Spotify, Amazon Music, etc) in the Honda RoadSync settings before setting off on their ride.
- The day’s local weather forecast can be checked for the following hour, 3 hours or 5 hours ahead. When using Navigation a detailed forecast for the rider’s destination is also available.
I have mixed feelings on this topic… Introducing more distractions to motorcycle riders, just like we are right now inside of cars. Years ago it was ban your cell phones as they are distractions while driving but now we’re plastering massive tablets right in front of people and asking them to find places on the screen to touch instead of having tactile buttons to actually feel and remember their location without having to take your eyes off the road etc. I won’t go down that wormhole but in my opinion we’re creating a space where people are paying less and less attention to us motorcycle riders on the street due to more distractions. Now, we’re introducing more distractions to motorcycle riders. On the flip side, we’re all adults and should be able to use technology safely and realize there is a time and a place for you to be distracted. When I look at it from that perspective, I love the idea of this new technology being introduced to the motorcycle lineup. To me though, riding is an escape the vast majority of the time. I don’t want any of the usual distractions that we have the other 99% of our day when we’re not riding. I don’t want phone calls or text messages. I want to forget about everything in the real world, put all my stress behind me and just enjoy riding. Enjoy the beautiful scenery and curvy mountain roads. Having notifications go off all the time, isn’t something I want during my ride. I have to admit though that I do enjoy music from time to time in the spots where I’m just droning down the road until I get to the next twisty section. The weather side of it would come in handy too, that’s always useful in my eyes as I hate getting stuck in the rain. Yes, I’m a pansy haha. I also like the navigation side of things as it would eliminate the need for me to have to stop and pull out my phone to find out where I’m at when I’ve went exploring in unknown areas. Does it take away some of the fun though in an overall “adventure” of just getting lost and seeing where you end up? It could but the good thing is, if you don’t want to use it – don’t turn it on. Overall though, I like it and could use some of the features – at times.
There are plenty of pros and then we have cons, some I didn’t mention but I’d love to hear what you guys think below. What do you think of this technology being introduced into the 2021 Honda motorcycle lineup? Do you want to see American Honda release this RoadSync app with the Honda Smartphone Voice Control system in the USA and expand upon it in the 2022 motorcycle lineup? I’m thinking it might be into the 2022 Honda motorcycle lineup before we start to see it release in the USA but who knows…
- Honda’s new bespoke connectivity system for motorcycles and scooters gives riders access to the most-used functions of their Android smartphone
- ‘Honda Smartphone Voice Control system’ is available as standard fitment on the 2021 X-ADV, CB1000R and the new Forza 750
- Also available as an option on 2021 Forza 350
- The free Honda RoadSync app has been developed for use in conjunction with the Honda Smartphone Voice Control system
- The Honda RoadSync app will be made available for download across Europe starting from December 2020