Examine the HMI opportunity

Examine the HMI opportunity



20 July 2010

A new report highlights how consumer automotive companies are using human-machine interface (HMI) technologies to differentiate their brand.

The automotive industry has suffered in recent years, but there is one area where interest is growing significantly – ‘connected car’ technologies. The newly published ‘Human-Machine Interface Technologies Report’ estimates the total HMI opportunity at $1.8bn in North America (excluding electric vehicles).

Major automotive manufacturers – such as BMW, Ford and Acura – are using HMI technology to drive sales, and set themselves apart from the competition.

Over 30 HMI professionals contributed to Telematics Update research through in-depth interviews, and another 75 through their in-depth survey. The report seeks to answer why – and more importantly how – leading automotive OEMs are prioritizing HMI technology.

Jay Mays, group vice president of design and chief creative officer at Ford, offers a window of insight into the importance of brand-focused HMIs: “Brand leads the customer. It’s not about ‘value’ but rather delivering on a promise.”

Luxurious designs? Intuitive systems? Customizable features? Telematics Update spoke to OEMs and suppliers about what ‘promises for delivery’ help sell cars.

Ease of use emerged as the most critical aspect of an HMI. 42% of telematics professionals surveyed listed ease of use as one of the top four elements. When the question was answered from a consumer perspective the number rose to 47%.

Effective controls, inputs and displays trailed closely behind, at 38%, 36% and 34% respectively.

Consumers want more, not less, functionality—and compelling, versatile, and safety-conscious user interfaces can provide it.

Automotive manufacturers top priority is brand differentiation – 23% listed it as their top HMI need. This suggests that telematics suppliers interested in producing built-in technologies must be willing to work very closely with manufacturers, and create unique products and parts that meet the needs of a specific vehicle.

Telematics Update is an independent intelligence company established in London and it primarily focuses on generating business intelligence for the digital/wireless automotive mobile and web industries.

More information about this report is available at www.telematicsupdate.com/HMI.


Pam Muckosy

+44(0) 207 375 7320 / 1 800 814 3459 ext 7554


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