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Old 20-03-2018   #1
Ohhh my, yes.
 
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Thinking of upgrading your 500x Uconnect?

Hi all,

My car's in for a service and some investigation works at the moment. In the meantime, my wheels consist of a normal 500 mirror edition on a 17 plate with the 7in Uconnect system! I recall a few questions being asked about the system, so I thought I'd share what I found in the 15 minutes I was playing with it, before I got too embarrassed to be a single, 32 year old, overweight male seen by my neighbours in a baby blue 500.

It's this:

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-q6hzsdCluD...t_update_a.jpg

Versus this:

https://i.ytimg.com/vi/--j27onBNlI/maxresdefault.jpg

In my impromptu, poorly written and highly subjective review of two larger FCA ICE systems.

First off, without looking at what's behind each unit, it certainly looks like the system could potentially slot into the hole provided for the 6.5in variant. So potentially good news there.

In use, the system felt very much like the 6.5in variant. The graphics had a little animation (where the 6.5 has none), but on the whole it didn't feel any snappier. I'd probably say it felt like taps were a little more easily registered on the 7in screen though.

The user interface is identical to the 6.5in system, albeit with a couple of usability tweaks to the phone screen.

There are also, as you will have probably seen, very very few ordinary buttons. The buttons are all on the screen or they are capacitive areas flanking the screen. Whilst this may, for some improve the look of the screen, it felt a little unbalanced as there are now large areas of dead space.

From the driver's perspective, I think the 7in system is a step backwards in some ways. Gone are the days when I can fondle buttons and know that I am getting the option I want. When you're on the move, trying to hit the right part of a touch screen is tricky. Especially on a bumpy road.

In the dedicated Uconnect menu, there was some customisation options where you can drag and drop symbols. I think this is a nice touch.

I wasn't able to find the 'mirror' bit of the system though. I suspect this is built into a specific app within the live services bit. As I cannot face setting my own car off with the speed camera alerts, I won't be testing this element. It is here that I also presume the sat nav from Android/iOS is delivered, as opposed to the TomTom driven services of the 6.5in screen.

To round off - there's the usual UBS and AUX connection. The DS slot of my 6.5in system is gone. And the sunlight legibility is awful. Worse than the 6.5in system I think. That said, in general use, the screen is more pleasing to look at with better viewing angles and richer colours. Almost what AMOLED is to ordinary LED in terms of impact.

Conclusion - the 7in system is more evolutionary than revolutionary. I am not sure I'd bother upgrading as the differences are subtle and few and far between.

Hope this is of interest to people.
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Old 20-03-2018   #2
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Re: Thinking of upgrading your 500x Uconnect?

After my experiences with the 6.5" unit my main question would be ""can the software and maps be updated at home or is it a workshop job?" 200 for each new release of maps is just taking the ****
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Old 20-03-2018   #3
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Re: Thinking of upgrading your 500x Uconnect?

Unless they are doing separate sat nav and non sat nav versions, my guess is that the navigation will be via a Google maps app on the mirror part of the system. I obviously can't confirm this though.
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Old 20-03-2018   #4
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Re: Thinking of upgrading your 500x Uconnect?

Quote Originally Posted by Garree001 View Post
Unless they are doing separate sat nav and non sat nav versions, my guess is that the navigation will be via a Google maps app on the mirror part of the system. I obviously can't confirm this though.


It will be Nav via Garmin for me. Free map updates for life
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Old 21-03-2018   #5
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Re: Thinking of upgrading your 500x Uconnect?

Shut up and take my money!

Joke aside, I can't upgrade my 6.5 directly via the dealer (long story), I will have to pay the full price for the new unit, which sucks. Anyway, do they come all with the same navigation provider, or is it possible to choose? I'd like Garmin or TomTom, if possible.
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Old 21-03-2018   #6
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Re: Thinking of upgrading your 500x Uconnect?

I can't see a navigation option on the unit in my courtesy car. So it either means there's two flavours - one with navigation and one without. Or navigation will be via your phone and the CarPlay bit. I hope it's the latter as Google maps is always updated and the navigation is pretty good.
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Old 21-03-2018   #7
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Re: Thinking of upgrading your 500x Uconnect?

Quote Originally Posted by Garree001 View Post

so I thought I'd share what I found in the 15 minutes I was playing with it, before I got too embarrassed to be a single, 32 year old, overweight male seen by my neighbours in a baby blue 500.
I loved this part of your post, very funny.

Thanks for the comparison, I'm sure it helps some on here.

I personally have the 5" non nav, and about the 5 physical buttons at the bottom, I do like them vs it being all touchscreen. Just wondered for the physical buttons if anyone "locates" in the way I do by putting my middle finger on the little shelf below first and then pressing the button i require with my index finger.
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Old 21-03-2018   #8
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Re: Thinking of upgrading your 500x Uconnect?

The 6.5 is utter garbage (considering the year it was released)

Really wish I had Android Auto to use Google Maps.

The 7" with Android/Carplay is a major leep away from relying on terrible built in systems.
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Old 21-03-2018   #9
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Re: Thinking of upgrading your 500x Uconnect?

Uconnect really is bug ridden though. I got my car back today after reporting the bother I was having with Bluetooth distortion and the speed camera alerts. Apparently the garage updated the software. And when I switched off the car after driving home, the head unit button lights stayed on. So I sat there and waited.

After 30 seconds or so, the button lights went out. But the screen started having a split second flash approximately every second. I've seen some people mention that their uconnect is draining the battery. So I'm half expecting my car to be dead in the morning. Especially because I moaned about the battery and the service checklist noted a charge of just 12.3V...
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Old 21-03-2018   #10
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Re: Thinking of upgrading your 500x Uconnect?

Uconnect, is unfortunately a by-product of a bankrupt Chrysler, that was fitted on their cars, usually in the larger 8.4 inch screen version.

When Chrysler was taken over by FIAT and became FCA group, the Uconnect garbage spread like a virus to most FCA brands, like FIAT, Alfa Romeo, Maserati, I think Lancia as well.

Unfortunately, development of the Uconnect software did not evolve much, its the same garbage it always was, and combined with cheap hardware.... cheap old LCD screens, slow CPU and the result is... horrible.

The 2018 model comes with a new LCD screen but underneath its still the same garbage uconnect.



The 500x is a great car, I love its size (not too small, not too big, easy to park everywhere), I love the design and retro/chic looks, I love the comfortable seats, the bluetooth, the safety package, the nice view out the front, the 1.6 diesel engine. My only complaints have been the Uconnect and the hard/sporty suspension.
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Old 22-03-2018   #11
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Re: Thinking of upgrading your 500x Uconnect?

Horrible product? I don't know, I find my 6.5 unit quite responsive and touch-friendly. In comparison with my previous VW unit (RNS 310) it's a blast, and that's enough for me.
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Old 22-03-2018   #12
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Re: Thinking of upgrading your 500x Uconnect?

The 6.5" screen on my 500x cost 1000 (about 870), with features that not even on par with the cheapest Chinese smartphone. My trusty Garmin came with a more responsive capacitive screen and life-time maps.

The comparison to the RNS310 is not fair, since that is 12 year old technology.
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Old 22-03-2018   #13
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Re: Thinking of upgrading your 500x Uconnect?

Quote Originally Posted by VeneziaBlue500x View Post
The 6.5" screen on my 500x cost 1000 (about 870), with features that not even on par with the cheapest Chinese smartphone. My trusty Garmin came with a more responsive capacitive screen and life-time maps.

The comparison to the RNS310 is not fair, since that is 12 year old technology.


I have succumbed, my top-of-the-range Garmin arrives today. 199 free map and traffic updates for life and a 7" screen. ONE update to Nav Maps on uConnect 200
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Old 22-03-2018   #14
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Re: Thinking of upgrading your 500x Uconnect?

I love my little Garmin. Due to work obligations, I drive all around Europe and I found the Garmin to be the most important device on a car, along with a phone.

It does have its little annoyances... like when it warns you about the impending... animal crossing, on a 6-lane motorway... or when it warns you about the... animal on the road in 565 miles ahead... as if the animal will be there after 6 hours or so...

The first case, is attributed to the software blindly going about reading road signs and the second is due to those updates received via the TMC frequency. Silly and annoying...
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Old 22-03-2018   #15
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Re: Thinking of upgrading your 500x Uconnect?

Quote Originally Posted by VeneziaBlue500x View Post
The comparison to the RNS310 is not fair, since that is 12 year old technology.
Sure. Just saying that I come from the technological jungle of the older VW units and I'm more than happy with my present unit, blissfully unaware that there may be something much better in the modern market.

Having said that, I do have a problem with my present navigation and if the upgrade to the 7" provides a better solution, I may be willing to cough up the money.

So, my question still stands: What in-dash navigation does the new unit come with exactly? Who's the map data provider? Is it still the same?

From what I understand, the in-dash navigation in these cars uses maps by Here, but I'm not even sure, because I got that info from the US support and that may not be the case in the European versions. Can anyone clarify that for me?
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