The annual J.D. Power International Automotive Roundtable, held Friday during NADA Conference, included a discussion by the company’s executive director of global vehicle research.
Get insight from Mike Van Nieuwkuyk on changing technology requirements.
Q: Evolving platforms—such as PDAs and Tablets, are providing new ways for consumer to communicate, share information and engage with product and service providers. How is the automotive industry keeping pace?
VanNieuwkuyk: Since consumers spend nearly 3 hours per day in their vehicle, they are seeking to make their time in the vehicle more useful and enjoyable. We see that new features that offer consumers greater connectivity, real-time information and flexibility to select who or what and how they want to be connected are being received with great consumer interest.
Q: Much of the technology is integrated into a single screen on the dashboard. The challenge there is taking technologies from different suppliers and trying to integrate them into a single system. . . Are the suppliers talking to the other suppliers to help integrate their various systems? If not, why not?
VanNieuwkuyk: In the connected car world, there is now an influx of new, non-traditional suppliers, where the car is just a portion or expansion of their business portfolio. These suppliers are not captive to the automotive industry, which makes it very difficult for OEMs and existing suppliers to work with them and within an industry that works at a very different pace and has different (sometimes competing) objectives.
Q: Is there such a thing as too much technology in a vehicle?
VanNieuwkuyk: I don’t think the issue is too much technology but rather that you can have too complex technology and you can have unnecessary technology. Just because we can doesn’t mean we should. Matching the technology to the need and the execution to the use environment is critical.