Tech Market: Is Being First Really An Advantage?
|   Wednesday, September 05, 2012
By the end of 2008 General Motors started to develop a touch screen infotainment system for Cadillac, called the Cadillac User Experience (CUE). At the same time Ford was at the starting point with a similar program, the MyFord Touch. Note that Ford is the first carmaker who implemented the concept of infotainment. However, being first isn't always the best course of action, because there are loads of problems to be solved. Also, the competition will learn from your mistakes.


Dave Sargent, vice president of global automotive at J.D. Power and Associates says that "As we started to see the problems with MyFord Touch, many of the other [automakers] quickly started to rethink what they were planning. Some of them were sort of too far gone and are coming to market with things that don't look that different from what Ford did."
At the 2010 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Ford scored a big hit, earning wide praise when MyFord Touch was displayed. It claimed it will give the world new technologies and smartphone junkies a reason to buy a Ford. They were optimistic.

Since then MyFord Touch is going downhill. The Ford brand went from being fifth place in J.D. Power's 2010 Initial Quality Study, to 23rd last year and 27th in 2012. Furthermore, Consumer Reports recently wrote on its blog that it "wouldn't recommend dealing with the frustrations of MyFord Touch on a daily basis even to an adversary."

However, Ford was not alone in this situation; other carmakers had similar problems when introducing new tech. BMW had similar issues a decade ago with its iDrive system, which uses a console mounted dial to control various functions. Because of critics BMW reworked the iDrive by gifting it with more dedicated buttons for frequently used functions.

Ford's system was criticized for removing many traditional knobs and switches in favor of the touch screen. Drivers have to take their eyes off the road in order to locate the correct location on the screen. This made common tasks such as adjusting the temperature, rather complicated as the driver had to work though several menus. In response to customer feedback, Ford decided to move the heated seat control onto the home screen as opposed to placing it in some obscure submenu.

Learning from past experiences, automakers now have infotainment systems that operate either by touch screen, voice controls, or both. For example, Toyota has a system called Entune plus a more comprehensive offer, the Enform, for Lexus, while GM is targeting millennials who don't have the money for a Cadillac with the new Chevrolet MyLink system.
Jeff Klei, president of the NAFTA region at Continental Automotive, says "Being first to market has some advantages, but there's also some risk." He has worked on infotainment systems like Hyundai's Blue Link and was the original service provider for GM's OnStar.

But if you look at things differently, if you wait too long for everything to be 100 percent functional, the odds are you will never come out with that product.
PHOTO GALLERY
Comments:
Name required * Email required Email not valid *
Comment required *

Latest news
Sunday, August 19, 2018 10:30:31 Nissan is present at the Detroit Auto Show with a compact concept SUV called...
Saturday, August 18, 2018 10:25:17 Another Hyundai premiere at the Detroit Auto Show is the new Veloster N,...
Friday, August 17, 2018 10:20:24 The South Koreans from Kia presented at the Auto Show in Detroit the new...
Thursday, August 16, 2018 10:15:59 After a massive promotion campaign, the US subdivision of Hyundai has officially...
Wednesday, August 15, 2018 10:05:55 Acura boasted that the new RDX is 100% made in the United States and is...
Tuesday, August 14, 2018 09:54:10 At the core of the new VW Jetta is the MQB platform, which is already used...
Tuesday, August 14, 2018 09:50:38 General Motors held the world premiere for the new generation Chevrolet...
Monday, August 13, 2018 09:45:39 The Ram Trucks brand, currently belonging to Fiat Chrysler Automobiles,...
Sunday, August 12, 2018 09:39:52 Ford brought the new generation mid-size Ranger pick-up at the Detroit Auto...
Saturday, August 11, 2018 09:34:13 At the Auto Show in Detroit, American car manufacturer Ford celebrates the...