Connectivity in cars deemed the most important purchasing factor

Having an Internet connected car is now more important to the buyer than the car's brand prestige, a recent survey has shown and with this paradigm shift, experts urge the manufacturers to be extra careful not to damage the brand when they implement the new technology.

In a recent What Car? Motoring Panel survey, connectivity was deemed a more important purchasing factor than a car’s brand prestige, previous experience with the model, ability to personalise and its CO2 emissions.

Research has also shown how connectivity is no longer reserved for the luxury end of the market: Over the next five years the number of connected cars on the road is predicted to rise significantly.

Gartner forecasts that one in five vehicles across the world will have a wireless network connection by the year 2020, amounting to more than 250 million connected vehicles worldwide.

The proliferation of vehicle connectivity will be led by improvements in the major functional areas of telematics, automated driving, infotainment and mobility services.

ABI Research further predicts that the number of connected cars with Internet of Things (IoT) type capabilities will hit 400 million units come 2030.

The production of cars which has hit an all-time high (a car every 20 seconds), and the new breach in technology, has led to calls from software quality specialist SQS for the UK automotive industry to future proof their manufacturing processes before irreparable brand damage is done.

Dr. Martyn Jeffries, Head of Automotive Solutions at SQS, explains: “Stories are abound from automotive forecourts of consumers not only expecting their phones and digital music to be accessible as standard but the whole family now wants to remain connected to the internet at all times too, especially keeping the kids entertained and connected to their friends on long journeys. This has meant that automotive manufacturers need to build increasingly sophisticated ‘computers on wheels.’ It is therefore a necessity to implement software quality assurance to eliminate unseen errors which could negatively impact the customer experience and ensure brand reputation is maintained.”

“The message is clear – giving your business the software backbone that will enable it to compete in the rapidly changing automotive industry in the wake of the connected car could make the difference between success and failure,” adds Jeffries. “Working with an outsourced UK-based specialist can ensure software systems are delivered faster, more robustly and ultimately more suited to the changing need. If the automotive industry is to reach and sustain the record-breaking production levels predicted by the SMMT it must ensure that its software is ready to meet these demands.”