Consumers Don’t Want Social Media In Vehicles: Study

According to consumer research discussed at the Telematics Detroit 2012 Conference, social media platforms such as Facebook and twitter are among the lowest priorities when it comes to in-car connectivity features consumers want in their vehicles.

Rather, vehicle shoppers are interested in “specific applications that make sense when they’re driving,” according to Thilo Koslowoski a noted technology analyst for consultancy firm Gartner.

Such “specific” apps include real-time weather forecasting, traffic conditions and parking availability. According to Koslowoski, the research by Gartner demonstrates that “you have to be careful not to confuse the car with your mobile phone or your laptop.”

The findings might come as news to some automakers, who seem increasingly obsessed about integrating vehicles as much as possible to consumer’s lifestyles, including making them rolling conveyances that allow motorists to stay connected via social media. In fact, Mercedes-Benz offers something mBrace2, which allows the driver to post to their Facebook page, albeit only via voice activation, while on the move. “We believe that telematics will allow people to be both connected and protected at the same time,” declared Sascha Simon. head of M-B USA’s advanced product planning division.

Koslowski, believes that in the future, while “scores of apps can be created,” the emphasis is going to be on those that are “driver specific.”

According to the Gartner research, when it comes to in-vehicle connectivity, around 82 percent of motorists are willing to pay extra for services if they’re deemed useful, such as OnStar, navigation systems, or other safety features; that’s a sizeable jump from just 20 percent in the US a few years ago. He also says that some of the current players in the telematics game will likely not survive in the future.

“I just think some companies will not be in a position to be successful on that on their own, it will require too much of an investment,” Koslowski said during the Detroit conference.

[Source: Detroit Free Press]

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