Connected cars: what you should know

Posted by Insignia Group on May 11, 2015 8:30:00 AM

Dolby surround sound isn’t the only must-have accessory in your new car. New autos often feature onboard Wi-Fi. It’s like your home Internet network. It can connect devices inside and outside your vehicle. This connectivity can do more than check baseball scores or give you social-media access.

How does my car connect to the web?
Cars connect on wireless local area networks. The range covers enabled devices in the car and outside, too. Besides web access to keep young passengers occupied during trips, onboard benefits include:

CRASH NOTIFICATIONS | Your car sends data from a collision to emergency responders. Data include number of rollovers, crash severity, and multiple impacts.

SPEED WARNING | Feature lets you know if you’ve carried speed beyond the legal limit.

SAFETY ALERTS | Nasty weather ahead? Road construction? Auto accidents en route? Cars can tap into data from weather services, departments of transportation and highway patrol.

What benefit is a connected car to its passengers?
Many cars built in 2010 or later come equipped with a head unit to serve as hub for the entire system. They also have on-board entertainment and an in-dash screen to centralize all web-enabled access. This allows a user to manage the system.

VOICE COMMANDS | Connected technology must differentiate your voice from in-cabin and external noise. Voice recognition systems are being fine-tuned, leading to safer auto operation.

MUSIC/AUDIO | Log into streaming music accounts for drive-time access.

CONTEXTUAL HELP | Low on fuel – for the car, or are you just hungry? A connected car offers reminders or suggestions for nearby places to load back up.


connected car

Do I have to be in the car to get connected?
Since the 2013 Connected Car Expo in Los Angeles, key players have emerged. Google formed the Open Automotive Alliance in 2014. Partners such as Audi, Nvidia and General Motors deliver Android platforms to cars. Apple also connects cars to users by a platform called CarPlay.
Smartphone connections create remote solutions for connected cars:

BATTERY CHECK | App will track charge levels on electric cars. Generations two and three of electric cars now have ways to check electric-car batteries.

UNLOCK CARS | Your smartphone becomes a remote control. Lock, unlock, open trunk or activate panic alarm from anywhere. This technology can also locate your car in a massive parking garage.

HEATING/COOLING | You’ve seen ads for the dad who starts the car at the airport with his smartphone. Warm your car up while you stay warm and dry.

Stay connected on your team, too
Just like any trend in auto accessories, the movement toward connected cars is worth watching. How does technology influence what a car buyer wants? Connectivity presents another window to opportunity at the dealership. How much does your team know about it?


Knowing what your customer wants is a vital component to creating a customer for life. Vehicle personalization allows you to cater to your customer's unique taste and lifestyle. For more information on creating a personalization profit center, contact Insignia. 

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Topics: Sales Best Practices, Accessory News