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The 4G mobile hotspot you can drive: The 2015 Audi A3 is all about data

Melissa Riofrio | May 15, 2014
We piled into the 2015 Audi A3: four friends and me, along with their devices--two iPads and two MacBooks. While I pulled up a Google Earth map on the car's display, they punched in the network name and password for the car's 4G LTE hotspot. Off we went, and all our online services came with us: music, videos, email, the works.

Then there's the cost of the car itself. The base price of the A3 2.0T quattro S tronic I drove is $32,900. The 4G connectivity and MMI system comes as part of the Prestige package, which, at $8,450 MSRP, adds another 25 percent to the car's price. (The total MSRP of the model we drove, with some other non-techie options, was $43,345.)

Yes, it's money. But I have to say, it was really fun to sit (not drive!) in the 2015 Audi A3 with two laptops, an iPad, and my iPhone. While my phone streamed music through the Bang & Olufsen audio system, I used the other devices to send emails, run my work's web-based applications, and talk to my poor, deskbound coworkers using our instant-messaging system. For a week, I had a cubicle that was also a pretty nice commuter car. In the real world, you can see how faster in-car connectivity could take the tedium out of road trips for the passengers—and provide drivers with some useful and even fun information to enhance the trip.

 

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