This is the Biggest Benefit Smart Connected Cars of the Future Can Offer Us

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Nearly every major tech company in the world wants to ride shotgun in our cars. From CarPlay to Android Auto to ongoing efforts by Amazon and Starbucks, these deep-pocketed companies know that the auto industry is going through a serious refresh cycle. We’re moving from isolated boxes of steel to highly integrated machines that can talk to other cars, to cloud servers and even to their owners.

While Apple and Alphabet’s Google do have an edge when it comes to in-car infotainment platforms, companies like Microsoft aren’t slacking off, either. Each of these companies now has a robust solution with which it is soliciting the attention of auto majors, and the auto companies themselves are leveraging this in a big way to make their cars even more attractive.

Most car makers have now realized that they can’t compete with technology companies when it comes to…errr ummm, technology. And that’s why we’re seeing a barrage of announcements around such partnerships over the past year or more. Everyone from BMW to Toyota is tying up with everyone from Apple to Amazon to get the best possible tech in their vehicles. And every tech major is heavily leveraging its IP portfolio to get any edge it can over its rivals/peers and get their technologies ‘to go.’

The biggest beneficiary of this seemingly chaotic deal-making is the consumer – you and I. We’re the ones benefitting in the end. With connected cars, we will eventually learn to wean ourselves away from our beloved smartphones when on the move. “Hands off, please” seems to be the direction connected cars are taking.

With voice assistants like Siri and Alexa making their way into the passenger’s seat, we won’t have to fiddle around with our smartphones when driving in the very near future. And with new technology deployments like in-car digital wallet use, voice-based interaction with infotainment systems and such, there won’t be a need to pull our phones out of the bag or our pocket when we’re in our cars.

We’re quickly moving towards a time when it won’t matter if we have our smartphones with us when we’re out. Our cars will double-up as smartphones – truly mobile phones, in fact! And, once tech companies and auto majors crack the self-driving car puzzle, we can be totally hands-free when we travel. No more tap, type or swipe – just speak and it’s done.

And that’s probably the biggest impact that connected cars will have on our lives in the future. They will wean us away from our smartphones by replacing every functionality – and then some.

 

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