Mobile Commerce

Can Connected Cars Drive Commerce?

Internet-connected vehicles are going to become common. How quickly? Gartner is now predicting that in about five years, more cars/trucks will have Internet connections than won’t.

“By 2020, about 150 million vehicles will be connected via Wi-Fi, and 60 percent to 75 percent of them will be capable of consuming, creating and sharing Web-based data,” Gartner said, according to a Computerworld story.

“To facilitate that kind of shift, connected-vehicle leaders in automotive organizations need to partner with existing ecosystems like Android Auto or Apple CarPlay that can simplify access to and integration of general mobile applications into the vehicle,” Gartner analyst Thilo Koslowski said in the report, according to the story.

ABI Research was a bit more granular, projecting that half of all vehicle infotainment systems capable of smartphone integration will use Apple’s upcoming iOS in the Car by 2018.

With other industries, this would suggest that carmakers would morph into tech companies selling online services. And although that will likely happen to a limited extent, it’s not what most car buyers want. As automakers have been adding their own souped-up navigation and entertainment systems, most car owners have found the auto-makers to be terrible at it, offering clunky designs.

Gartner predicts that 58 percent of U.S. and 53 percent of German vehicle owners will insist that tech firms, not car companies, control the Internet and other electronic systems. “Today’s connected-vehicle experience, based on automakers’ own proprietary  systems, lacks the functionality and intuitiveness of mobile devices, Koslowski noted,” Computerworld said.

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