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Survey Shows Consumer Preferences for Automotive Electronics

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【Summary】Consumers are hot for smartphone-mirroring systems, according to new report.

Original Timothy Healey    Jul 03, 2017 8:15 AM PT
Survey Shows Consumer Preferences for Automotive Electronics

A new report has surveyed consumers about their preferences when it comes to automotive electronics.

The study, published by automotive industry analysis firm IHS Markit, surveyed more than 5,000 vehicle owners who were intending to purchase a new car within the next three years. The report was titled the 2017 Automotive Connected Services and Apps Consumer Analysis and it covered five important automotive markets – the U.S., U.K., Canada, China, and Germany.

This is the fifth annual such survey from the London-based IHS Markit.

"The 2017 survey includes consumer input on 31 technologies, from a variety of viewpoints," Colin Bird, automotive technology analyst for IHS Markit and one of the report's authors, writes. "Suppliers and automakers alike will be able to use these findings to help drive future business decisions and technology investments, while determining future product offerings."

Findings Favor Comfort

And what were some of those findings?

Creature comforts were high on consumers' lists, for one. Sunroofs and moonroofs, especially, proved popular in four of the five regions.

American consumers were most willing to pay extra for rear-seat entertainment systems – presumably to keep children entertained on long drives.

Telematics and connectivity are likely to be a big part of the market by 2022, according to IHS Markit forecasts, and just under one-third of American consumers surveyed expressed interest in telematics, while 29 percent were intrigued by in-car wireless internet (which is already available in many vehicles). However, consumers didn't want to pay much extra for either feature.

Safety, Entertainment Matter

Consumers are interested in safety features such as GPS-based navigation, roadside assistance, stolen-vehicle assistance, and crash-notification systems. Over half of the survey's respondents said they already own at least one vehicle that has one of these features. Thirty-two percent of all respondents in all five regions viewed roadside assistance as the most important telematics feature, while 28 percent viewed stolen-vehicle assistance as the most important.

A quarter of respondents preferred automatic crash notification and turn-by-turn navigation. Slightly over half wanted to see real-time traffic information.

Almost 40 percent of Chinese respondents wanted to have remote control of their vehicle via smartphone (the tech has been available on an extremely limited basis here in America).

How about smartphone-mirroring systems like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto? Nearly all respondents who were familiar with such systems indicated that they were either interested or somewhat interested in these kinds of systems.

Navigation, Weather Apps Important

When it comes to apps, navigation, weather, and music drew the most interest, in that order.

"Consumers expect a lot from their next vehicle," Bird said. "Their expectations are constantly evolving as well, as consumers expect development and implementation of these technologies in vehicles to be introduced as quickly as consumer electronics such as smartphones and tablets. It's up to OEMs and suppliers to determine how to best address these challenges and ramp up business plans accordingly"

via: IHS Markit

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