In a competitive global marketplace, one key way for auto manufacturers to keep customers satisfied is to anticipate and meet their future wants and desires. We asked drivers what multimedia and entertainment features they might want in tomorrow’s car.What they wanted differed by market – sometimes a little, but for some factors quite significantly. This means car manufacturers need to adapt their models for each country, and to do that they need to understand those market differences.
The top three feature requirements in the US were aligned to those of the other three countries in the study: Germany, Italy and Japan. These desired features were: infotainment systems compatible with different operating systems, easy-to-access voice support/information systems, and color heads-up display.
However, two features stood out as more desirable in the US compared to Germany and Japan: the ability to video conference in-car and waterproof/spill-proof interior vehicle electrics. Looking to the near future, it seems American drivers and passengers expect to be fully connected to the internet when on the move, managing video conferencing and multimedia.
This research formed part of a wider project looking at user experience with the human machine interface (HMI) in vehicles. For each market we identified which car brands performed the best for in-car entertainment. We probe for three qualities in the UX score: task-oriented which relate to the operation and learnability of the way the product works; self-oriented which refer to the feelings of belonging and inspiration that the product creates, and aesthetic qualities which refers to the look, feel and sound of the car. Overall the UX benchmark globally was 4.3 and the score in the US was 4.6. In Japan it was the lowest at 3.8, with Germany at 4.4 and Italy the highest at 4.7.
The UX Score is based on a ten-question survey administered after a user has interacted with a product. The UX Score provides a measure that can be used to track experiences over time, better understand product loyalty or market share, or compare HMIs. GfK carried out online interviews with 3,776 drivers aged 18 years old and over, across four countries: USA, Japan, Germany and Italy. The fieldwork was executed in December 2013 and the data were weighted to be gender and age representative for car drivers with one or more cars in the household within the online population. The research was presented for the first time in June 2014 in Germany.
Melinda Jamil is Senior Research Director of User Experience at GfK. To gain the full insights and benefits from our detailed study contact us.
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