NORTH AMERICA INTERNATIONAL AUTO SHOW, Detroit –– HARMAN, the premium global audio and infotainment group, (NYSE:HAR) is enabling seamless integration between HARMAN infotainment systems and smartphone features such as SMS text and email, enabling drivers and passengers to stay connected with their digital lifestyle without compromising safety or convenience. HARMAN’s Automotive Division has developed technologies that can now beam information such as emails and contacts from handsets and smartphones over to HARMAN in-dash head units. Messages are then displayed on the infotainment system screen, or for maximum safety and ease, read back aloud using a text-to-speech option.

HARMAN leads the automotive industry with the most comprehensive level of smartphone-to-headunit integration, including support for devices from a broad number of manufacturers including Nokia™, Research in Motion (RIM), and others, as well as Android-based smartphones. HARMAN deploys the Message Access Profile (MAP), a Bluetooth® standard used to exchange messages between devices. Developed in close cooperation with RIM, the manufacturers of the Blackberry®, MAP is approaching production readiness.

“Our vision for the car is to keep users safely connected, ensuring their hands never need to leave the wheel and keeping their eyes on the road ahead,” says Sachin Lawande, HARMAN, Chief Technology Officer and Co-President, Automotive.

HARMAN is working in closely with leading technology partners on advanced applications to extend voice detection and voice control applications. Text-to-Speech capabilities are already available in HARMAN infotainment systems in the market today, with Speech-to-Text solutions to be available in cars beginning 2012. The phone and headunit automatically synchronize SMS and Email messages once connected in a vehicle via a wireless Bluetooth connection. When a new SMS or Email message arrives at the phone, the message is delivered over Bluetooth to the headunit which alerts the user of the arrival of a new text message either through a voice notification or on-screen indication.

HARMAN also extends the Text-to-Speech/Speech-to-Text functionality to enable voice read-back of calendar and notes, and supports dictation of messages, which can then be converted to text and sent out as Email or SMS. To promote safety and convenience, the driver can control which messages he chooses to have read back, and when he wishes to hear them, through control settings on the HARMAN headunit.

HARMAN ( designs, manufactures and markets a wide range of audio and infotainment solutions for the automotive, consumer and professional markets – supported by 15 leading brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon® and Mark Levinson®. The Company is admired by audiophiles across multiple generations and supports leading professional entertainers and the venues where they perform. More than 20 million automobiles on the road today are equipped with HARMAN audio and infotainment systems. HARMAN has a workforce of about 11,000 people across Americas, Europe and Asia, and reported sales of $3.4 billion for fiscal year ended June 30, 2010. The Company`s shares are traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol NYSE: HAR