Pandora and the Connected Car

RWW is doing a series looking at how media consumption on non-computer devices is effecting user experience design and today they look at Pandora use in cars. Its been a long road (haha) but we are finally starting to see a general awareness of internet enable vehicles as being a good thing.  For Pandora the car is an obvious choice as a platform extension because so many people listen to music while driving.

For now Pandora in the car is just using the smartphone and in Ford or Chevrolet can be controlled with the in car voice activation system.  Eventually that will change and there will be Pandora apps for each vehicle type.

From RWW: “To do this (integrate Pandora in cars) Pandora has invested in partnerships, such as Ford Sync, Chevrolet MyLink and others. The aim is to take the “command and control” of the app the user is carrying on their smartphone and “move it back into the head unit [of the car] – where it belongs.” So from the dashboard of the car, the user can pull up the station list, select a station, thumb up a song, discover music and more. Here’s a video demonstration from Ford (it starts off by demonstrating the old method, then moves to the newer dashboard integrated technology):”

Also of interest is the level of effort and number of players involved in getting an app into the vehicle ecosystem.  Again from RWW: ” Pandora itself doesn’t control the user interaction of its app inside the car. In fact, the OEMs are the ones making the decisions about user interaction for Pandora in the car. This implies that the user experience is slightly different in each model of car, which is an issue that web apps in cars will need to be wary of. Inconsistent user experience has traditionally been a common form of frustration for consumers in the computing world.”

And the Chevy promo video:

About Daniel Davenport

Daniel is a digital media executive with internet and broadcast experience. Daniel is currently the executive strategy director at THINK Interactive.

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