Benchmark Results: Boot And Bluetooth
So much of what we do centers on benchmark results. As such, we've developed a test suite that covers some of the tasks and processes important to a driver using his car's technology package. The tasks that we're measuring include: boot-up time, time to connect to a paired phone, the time it takes to start music playback after booting the infotainment system, backup camera delay, and lastly, the length of time it takes to pair a phone via Bluetooth. We chose these measurements because they affect everyday use of the system.
We perform the tests by recording video of each action and reviewing the footage in an editor to establish the exact point the system was turned on, and when the tasks are completed. The result is accurate; these aren't stop watch-timed tests. Since the 2012 Kia Soul Exclaim is our second test car, we established a baseline using a personal vehicle, a 2011 Volkswagen Routan SE with the mainstream Chrysler 430N (RHB radio code with Garmin navigation) system and UConnect Bluetooth connectivity. This is a system Chrysler currently sells with new vehicles. Our results from our 2012 Ford Focus Titanium and SYNC with MyFord Touch review are included as well.
UVO's simplicity puts it in the lead for fastest boot of the three systems we’ve reviewed. We are impressed that it only takes 10 seconds to reach the main screen, putting UVO five seconds ahead of Chrysler's 430N (RHB). As with the other two solutions, UVO begins to initialize as soon as you open the Soul's door, so you don't even notice the boot process as you're getting situated in the car.
Music playback in UVO begins 13 seconds after the system starts, making Kia's implementation the fastest yet.
UVO and SYNC with MyFord Touch demonstrate almost identical performance in phone pairing, with UVO favored by less than a second. Even still, Kia's solution is three seconds slower than the quick-pairing Chrysler 430N (RHB).
Kia UVO is just as fast as SYNC with MyFord Touch when it comes to getting into discovery mode. Like Ford's technology package, UVO doesn’t rely on sub-menus or voice commands, only necessitating the press of a button and confirmation that you want to add a device.
Not all backup cameras are created equally, and the time it takes to display an image after the car is started can vary. UVO is quick to display the camera's output on-screen, beating out Chrysler's 430N (RHB) by three seconds. During testing, we never put the car in reverse before the backup camera was ready to switch-on.