Recently we discussed how the auto industry could soon implement a network technology that will improve the way we use our automobiles. Already on the market are cell phone and Wi-Fi networks that aid in a completely hands-free communication.
The automotive industry is ready for the kind of apps that have revolutionized the mobile space over the last year, according to a report released from iSuppli. The appeal for app technology while in-car makes sense. Drivers could use such offerings for navigation purposes or locating reference points, such as a dealership for repairs, while passengers can play video games or access a social network. According to Earth2Tech, a handful of automakers, like BMW, Nissan, Ford, GM, and Honda, have developed specific services using an iPhone app. WSJ calls it “the coolest way to pay” where consumers of the Mercedes Benz app use it to make a car payment, view their accounts, and find out how much they have left to pay on the car.
As smartphone app users are increasingly connected, we can also soon expect a host of other services with platforms cross-fertilizing with TV, portable music players, and gaming devices. For example, BMW recently unveiled a new app store that enables delivery of services directly to the vehicle or via a PC. At last month’s Frankfurt Motor Show in Germany, Nokia presented a smartphone integrated into the car’s dashboard computer system, and Parrot talked of plans to build an Android-based device that offers a complete implementation of smartphone features to the automobile. We are at the early stages of planning for a fully connected automobile experience and automakers cleverly innovating for the future. If watching the road ought to be the most important thing on our mind, we will see how these additions enhance or distract our driving experience.
This post was originally featured on MobileBehavior Next Great Thing.