Slice of Life #6: Car Tech Site

Idea: Infotainment amenities are becoming more important to consumers purchasing vehicles. Unfortunately, most car manufacturers highlight their in-vehicle tech systems via bullet points and terse video demos on their websites. Car review sites rarely go into depth about these systems in the same way they do regarding the engine specifics and handling of the vehicle. Yet, nearly every vehicle I’ve ever ridden in seems to provide infotainment systems that suffer from significant user interface shortcomings or actual bugs that frustrate the experience of enjoying your ride. Considering the new efforts by Google and Apple to implement technology into dashboards, you’d think such focus would be a higher priority.

I want to know things like, is inputing destinations into the navigation frustrating or impossible when the car is in gear. I want to know how well speech recognition works. I want to know whether the act of plugging in my iPhone to charge triggers the iPod autoplay function, even when trying to make a call. I want to know if the lack of physical buttons in lieu of a touchscreen increases my risks on the road due to janky feedback responses. All of these are issues I’ve experienced in the vehicles I’ve been in in the last few years. And because critics aren’t reviewing these items, they don’t seem to be getting fixed.

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