Connected driverless cars allow for better parking, reading, videos and eating

Audi Selfdriving in LA trafficAs the self-driving Audi SQ5 powered by Delphi drives itself through Los Angeles, we thought it would be interesting to see what people really want in a self-driving car and what they want to do while not driving.

We know that some of the self-driving engineers Tweet and use social media while the car is driving itself.

There are many other things that drivers who become passengers can do as technology takes over driving tasks and they are suggested in a survey from Carnegie Mellon University (CMU). CMU is the birthplace of autonomous vehicle (AV) technology, with a 30-year history of advancing self-driving car technology. Many of its graduates now work for self-driving projects such as at Google. Chris Urmson head of Google’s self-driving car program is a Carnegie Mellon Ph.D.

CMU conducted a study asking 1,000 people aged 17-70 what they would like in self driving cars and how it would change their lifestyles. The survey also asked what the non-drivers would be doing.

The most wanted feature “self-adjusting performance based on weather conditions,” ranked higher with people aged 36 to 70.

People Not Only Want the Car to Drive But Want Special Parking Too

The youngest respondents (18-24) and the oldest (66-70) at 64% were closely matched in wanting cars that can find elusive parking spots.

More Screen Time for the Millennials:

When it comes to wanting TV or computer in the dashboard, virtual valet and an active visual display of car safety features, 18 to 24 year-olds want these options more than other age groups.

More work, more food and more partying for younger crowds

  • People aged 18 to 24 ranked the highest in their desire to eat lunch and work in their cars.
  • People under 35 opted the most (37%) to have their cars designed as an office.
  • The desire to work in cars lessened sequentially with increasing age.
  • Millennials indicate interest in working, they also showed the greatest affinity in cars designed to host great mobile parties.

What else do people want to do in cars?

  • Seniors aged 66-70 are most likely to read (51%), and those 18 – 24 are the second most likely to pick up a book.
  • Respondents aged 25 to 35 are the most inclined to watch movies and put on makeup.
  • Only 8% of the people polled want coffee makers in their cars, and those most in favor of in-car java were 35 and under.

How Safe is Self-Driving?

Higher percentages of drivers aged 46 to 70 consider night driving, driving unfamiliar roads, navigating congested roads, merging traffic situations, and interstate travel safer with self-driving technology.

Those under 35 think that self-driving cars will make daytime driving and taxis safer.

Top Wanted Features in Connected Self-Driving Cars?

  1. Self-adjusting performance based on weather conditions.
  2. Self-parking to find a space.
  3. Driver fatigue warnings.
  4. TV or computer in the dashboard.
  5. Active visual display of car safety features.
  6. Virtual valet to avoid the rain (car picks you up).
  7. Voice command for the visually impaired.