Back in the days of the Walkman, we longed for a single device that would hold all our music, slip easily into our cars, integrated with their audio systems--all without scratching like compact discs, or getting lost in an annoying way in the clutter of jewel cases and console storage. (Secretly, we also were wishing for the death of the in-car CD player. Wish granted?)
That day is here--and so is the day we've long asked for, the day when you could identify a new song over the airwaves and add it to your collection at the touch of a button.
It's called iTunes tagging, a new function baked into the audio system of the 2011 Lincoln MKX. Working in tandem with the MKX's available HD Radio, the iTunes tagging function blends in seamlessly with the hardware in the new Lincoln crossover, with the hardware brought to the media party by HD Radio and by Apple.
Here's how it works--very simply, as I found on a long drive last weekend in the MKX. When you're dialed in to an HD Radio station (thousands of them, at last count), the MKX's LCD screen displays a "Tag" button. Hear a song you like, and press Tag, and the song's information is stored in Apple's iTunes information profile.
The next time you plug in your phone to connect to the MKX's standard SYNC suite of Bluetooth and USB-enabled functions, the information is transferred to your iPod or iPhone. Then, the next time you connect the Apple device to iTunes, the song is added to your library (and charged to your account, if it's not free of charge).
The iTunes connection will let users preview songs before they're added--and it can store up to 100 songs, if you're discovering an artist for the first time, or simply in the pre-natal stages of developing a serious music collection. Thanks to an extensive music collection hoarded over the years, I spent $1.98 on two Katy Perry tracks previously unknown to anyone over 30 years old, and they're mine for good, now.
The tagging function is just one feature of the best media hub in the business, which we'll describe more next week in our first drive of the 2011 Lincoln MKX and in more in-depth posts on its connectivity, which also includes mobile hotspots, roving traffic information, even on-the-go concierge-style service for ordering movie tickets or getting sports scores.
Stay connected--we'll bring you that 2011 Lincoln MKX drive first thing Monday morning, September 13.