What is infotainment?

  • What is infotainment?
  • How does it work?
  • We explain the tech

Infotainment is shorthand for the latest breed of in-car digital screens and multimedia systems that deliver information (sat-nav, weather, trip computer readings) and entertainment (radio, TV, music). It’s a handy portmanteau of the two words.

How does infotainment work?

The vehicle’s media, sat-nav and settings are displayed and controlled on a central screen inside the car. Many cars use a touchscreen to control the system, while others use a rotary touchpad, voice commands or simply buttons on the steering wheel.

Do I need it?

If the features on your car mean it’s necessary, it will be included in the specification. It’s very common for manufacturers to offer optional upgrades to multimedia systems in order to get the latest technology such as Wi-Fi hotspot capability and live traffic and weather updates.

Found on

Cars from across the spectrum including the Volkswagen Up, Nissan Qashqai and Ford Fiesta.

Also known as

iDrive, MMI, Comand, Sync2, InControl, Touch + Go, PCM… each manufacturer tends to call their infotainment system something different

Looking for more jargon-busting motoring meanings? Head over to our Parkers Car Glossary page and take a look at our other definitions