Saturday, August 7, 2010

What is the one device or accessory you would like to have in your car, but don't today?

Welcome ladies and gentlemen, today’s discussion centers around a new Autobytel “What’s Hot Now?” report, Wired-in-the-Car, (that I received by email) that asks people several questions from “Do you think the ability to surf the internet in your car represent a significant safety issue?”, and “What is the one device or accessory you would like in your car, but don’t today?” and the answers are as expected.

In the survey question, “Do you think the ability to surf the internet in your car represent a significant safety issue?”

64% - Yes, Significant
23% - Yes, Moderate
13% - No.

Personally, I believe that having most electronics in the car are a distraction especially cell phones, iPods/MP3 Players, GPS/Navigation, TV/DVD Players and more. However none of those even compare to having the internet in the car that does represent a significant safety issue and internet shouldn’t be an option in a car. Drivers get distracted way too easy and given them another device is just asking for trouble.

But if we are talking about a limo, that’s different, but not normal cars, even drivers behind that car can see screens and get distracted too.


In the survey question, “What is the one device or accessory you would like in your car, but don’t today?”

30% - In-Dash GPS/Navigation
24% - I can live without technology
14% - Voice-Controlled Phone, Radio, Navigation, etc.
8% - Rear seat Entertainment (TV Screen(s), DVD Player, audio output, etc.)
7% - Other
6% - Bluetooth Connectivity
6% - iPod/MP3 player input
5% - Ability to surf the internet

Personally, I would love a GPS/Navigation, I consider myself smart, but when it comes to reading a map, it’s just not going to happen period. However, I wouldn’t want an in-dash GPS/Navigation, the cost to either buy in a new car or have installed is expensive and if the in-dash one breaks, the repair cost is huge too. I would much rather buy a portable GPS/Navigation unit that I could switch between cars, hideaway in a lock box in my car and if it breaks, it doesn’t require a trip to a dealership, just an electronics store for warranty replacement or buy a new one.

The second item isn’t really on this list, it would be a hard drive attached to stereo system that has all of my music on it so everything is controlled either on the steering wheel or in-dash unit. The concept of even using an iPod does pose a safety issue when trying to control it. I believe that most electronic devices in your car will be voice-controlled in the near future.

I realize and believe that a car is more than just a car that you drive from point A to point B, but when did having all of these electronics in a car because the “must have” thing and when did a car become more than just a driving experience. I know that we need stereos to listen to music, I know that we need something to keep the kids entertained on short and long trips, and GPS/Nav systems to find where we are going, but most of these electronics isn’t what we need and is a safety issue.

A car is for driving, not a home office, not an entertainment system and not another thing people can think of. Get what you need and drive safe.