A new report from the In-vehicle UX (IVX) group at Strategy Analytics has investigated car owners’ usage of, and interest in, audio infotainment sources in the car. Surveying consumers across the US, UK, France, Germany, Italy, and China, Strategy Analytics has found that after several years of explosive interest, consumer appetite for smartphone mirroring systems has finally levelled off. As more mirroring systems come to market in high-volume cars, and more non-early-adopting segments are exposed to them, their limitations are becoming apparent. But despite this, most embedded systems still do not provide better UX than smartphone mirroring systems.
“The UX of embedded systems still does not exceed smartphone mirroring systems, essentially driving car owners to CarPlay and Android Auto leaving infotainment devoid of any brand differentiation. Given these shifting infotainment usage habits and consumers’ shifting interest in what is a ‘must-have’ for the next car purchase, designers and product planners must tread carefully in future product lines.” commented Derek Viita, Senior Analyst and report author.
“Flat touchscreen UI provides easy access to multiple sources, but while a key requirement in markets such as China where radio is fast fading, this is less important for markets with heavy radio usage such as in the West.” said Chris Schreiner, Director, Syndicated Research UXIP, “However, preference for radio still provides an opening for design teams interested in testing novel physical HMI.”
Key report findings include:
- Radio usage is in fast decline across the US, Europe, and China, even though in the West it still remains important for some key consumer segments.
- Car owners are sending mixed signals on the next-best “must have” after radio. Flat user interfaces which allow easy access to all audio/media sources will be more important than ever for the next model turn.
- But in the lengthy search for a next successor to the CD player, streaming media has shown a remarkable surge in usage and interest, relative to owned media on portable devices.