Visteon puts an iPad in a car dashboard, we go hands-on (video)

We happen to think the future of the car dashboard is a gradual path to obsolescence, dying and getting replaced by a mobile device. Visteon also think there's a future for mobile devices in a dash -- but not for actually replacing the car stereo. Visteon showed off its Consumer Electronics Device to Vehicle HMI (human/machine interface), which is basically a stupidly long name for a system enabling device integration of the sort we haven't seen yet. Yes, you can stream tunes through the car's stereo but, more impressively, actually change the channel that it is tuned to.

That's just the beginning, with a navigation display and even simplified web browsing, but most impressive is the ability to manage the rest of the car's interior. You can change seat positions, adjust climate controls, and probably much, much more than the semi-functional demo unit we got our hands on can do. There is a dock connector for the iPad but that's just for providing power: the connectivity is entirely wireless, meaning people in the back seat can change the channel -- or push up the seat of the person in front of them. The box that handles all this is going into production soon and so should start showing up in cars sometime over the next year. Which cars? Your guess is as good as ours, as Visteon works with more car marques than it doesn't.