Screen Test: Five Frustrating Infotainment In-Car Interfaces Page 2

April 20, 2013
CUE interface, in 2013 Cadillac XTS

CUE interface, in 2013 Cadillac XTS

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There is finally some relief on the horizon. In next-generation systems, hardware will make a major leap (that retina display, in a vehicle, isn't all that far away), and capacitive screens will be common. Some next-generation systems will also be able to recognize when a passenger makes selections, and allow them to program a new destination or change system settings—a common complaint.

Have it your way in the future

But perhaps most importantly, systems in the not-so-distant future will recognize that not everyone will feel at home with a particular interface. “One user might have a preference for touch screens, others for voice, some for rotary,” said Boyadjis. “Automakers know that they need to create a system that has redundancies.”

According to Boyadjis, there are concepts in the works that will let the driver customize an interface, or more simply, fill out a questionnaire, with the system then going to an interface that's customized for that kind of customer. Some voice-control systems already have it, he notes. Gesture-recognizing systems are on the way, too—as soon as automakers can agree on what each gesture means, and manage some other issues, like how some gestures won't carry well across cultural barriers.

After much debate, the High Gear Media editorial team singled out a few interfaces that either perform sluggishly or are stubbornly particular about the way people must interface with them. Although some of the newer screen-based systems like GM's CUE aren't short of issues either, we agree with the analysts we've spoken to and agree that more interface options is a good way to avoid frustration.

All-in-one vehicle interfaces are here to stay, and they're getting better; but follow on to see five systems that could drive you bonkers. And be sure to tell us about your own experiences: What works and what doesn't?

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