ATX user survey shows acceptance of audio-based driver information

Recent research of U.S. vehicle owners indicates growing recognition by consumers of the value of specific information sent directly into their vehicles, including reminders related to vehicle maintenance and ownership, or notifications that can enhance or make safer their driving experience.

The study also showed motorists are becoming increasingly comfortable using interactive voice recognition (IVR) systems to receive this type of information more safely.

These were among the major findings in a proprietary research study conducted by Synovate Motoresearch on behalf of ATX Group. The study polled owners of multiple vehicle brands within both luxury and non-luxury automobile market segments.

The study findings revealed widespread vehicle owner interest in receiving messaging about vehicle performance or driving assistance:

* 89 percent expressed interest in receiving notification of recalls for their vehicle
* 79 percent were interested in receiving updates on fuel prices and gas station locations
* 58 percent wanted to receive notification of special AM/FM or satellite radio programming
* 57 percent would choose to receive reminders from a dealership that regular maintenance is due

Half of vehicle owners interviewed also expressed interest in receiving specific, in-vehicle information from their automobile manufacturer or local dealership about the need for maintenance measures or notification about potential vehicle performance problems. In fact, vehicle owners widely preferred an in-vehicle message to direct mail, a voicemail message or text message.

Across all segments, nearly eight out of 10 vehicle owners were at least somewhat comfortable with an in-vehicle voice interface. Half were comfortable or very comfortable with such systems, especially luxury segment vehicle owners who have had more experience interacting with in-vehicle voice technology.

“In contrast to messages pushed to a mobile communications device, different principles must apply to developing in-vehicle messages to minimize driver distraction,” said Dr. Tom Schalk, ATX vice president of Voice Technologies. “You have to make the IVR interface simple, to avoid driver frustration or confusion. There can be no extensive scrolling through menus. Messages must be short and required verbal inputs from the driver must be kept to a minimum.”

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