When Smarter Isn't Safer

2018-12-05 08:36:04

infotainment service Jamestown

Remember when the dashboard of your auto only had an AM/FM radio and a heater? (If you are younger than 40, you probably don't.) Can you harken back when you could only see a speedometer and odometer through the steering wheel? Those days seem to be long gone as car manufacturers continue to add smart features to our cars.

To avoid a mess of knobs and buttons all over the place, consoles are usually designed around a central touchscreen. There is a screen to control the stereo, navigation system, paired devices such as cell phones, the air conditioning, and more!

This configuration lets you access everything in one location. But is there a disadvantage to these touchscreens? Many safety experts say yes.

Your Fingers Can't Feel What Screen You Are On

The main issue with these onboard computer screens is that they aren't physically intuitive. Knobs and analog buttons can easily be operated without looking at the unit you're controlling. When you turn a knob and hear the fan get louder, you know you've cranked up the AC.

The main touchscreen lets you control the stereo, but you probably have to navigate to the climate control screen before you can control the AC or heater. It's hard to know which screen you are on unless you glance over at it. It's virtually impossible to memorize every screen.

Carmakers are working to improve touchscreen design and interface. Haptic controls and voice command features can increase safety without sacrificing convenience.

Be Safer Today

But what can you do today to be safer with the touchscreen you have? Take twenty minutes and familiarize yourself with the screens and how they work while parked. Pair your phone and try to use voice command when available. Also, make it a habit to set up your navigation system and choose a stereo setting before you pull out of your garage.

At I-86 Truck & Auto Repair we want all of our customers to be safe and comfortable in their cars. For infotainment system service, call us at 716-665-2501 to speak with a service advisor!

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