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Carmakers Try to Figure Out the New Generation - NYTimes.com - Connectivity is getting more important.

I’m glad to see a growing awareness of the need for connectivity but the manufacturers’ response is to add a hodgepodge of “features” rather than recognizing that connectivity is about transcending the different twisting passages and about treating the car as just another place. As people bring their own technology the car loses its special status. The speakers, for example, become a resource rather than part of the car’s own sound system.
 
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http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/29/business/global/carmakers-try-to-figure-out-the-new-generation.html
 
Among car companies, which are displaying their latest products at the Paris Motor Show now under way, there is a growing recognition that young people may simply not care about cars as much as their elders. Smartphones now rival automobiles as the default symbol of adulthood, and the portals to the world beyond home and school. Electronic technology competes ever more for the younger generation’s disposable income.
 
As a result, in Paris automakers seem to spend more time talking about how well their cars interact with an iPhone than they do about engine performance. Connectivity is the new horsepower.
 
“Before we talked about steering, ride and all those elements,” said Gunnar Herrmann, vice president for quality at Ford of Europe. “You could argue those are dropping down in importance. Connectivity is getting more important.”
 
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8 comments
 
A car, like a piece of software, is a tool.   It doesn't need a special status.  It's just another tool, like your text editor, compiler, web browser, spreadsheet, operating system, etc. But, just as we all have our favorite text editor, we'll all continue to have our favorite cars.

Over time, i expect that the car will become increasingly more connected in our new age of information, just as every other part of our living experience has become more connected.  Connectivity itself is an expression of the needs of the information age, just as cars themselves were an expression of the needs of the industrial age.
 
Aye, that's the rub: who's going to Hackers?
 
Haven't committed to hackers yet -- trying to sort out a number of competing timings.
 
when the cars go driverless, its platform attributes will become even more important.  
 
Maybe the New Generation thinks the next car should look more like a train. I know my boys (18 & 20) don't care about cars.
 
I've got a son who cars a lot about cars but doesn't drive. The other one can drive but sees no point in owning a car while in a city when he can bike or use public transportation (Boston! Though he's in Paris at the moment sans car)
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