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Device operating systems

Your Car Is Not a Cell Phone

10:45 AM -- At wireless tradeshows like CTIA , it's not uncommon to go from one meeting with a hands-free, safe driving vendor to another with a vendor promising to turn the car into a smartphone for gaming, movies, texting and more. Talk about mixed messaging.

In-vehicle connectivity is getting more attention as apps developers and operators look for more screens and Long Term Evolution (LTE) to make the connection possible. It's attracting the interest of car makers too.

Today, 11 companies teamed up to launch the Car Connectivity Consortium to innovate on in-vehicle connectivity based on the Terminal Mode standard that reflects a phone's interface on a car system. The group is made up of six major car makers and a group of consumer electronics vendors that includes LG Electronics Inc. (London: LGLD; Korea: 6657.KS) , Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK) and Samsung Corp. (See Car Connectivity Consortium Starts Up.)

LR Mobile has also seen several demos from wireless operators like SK Telecom (Nasdaq: SKM) touting the potential for apps, movies and games as well, so the interest is widespread.

In-vehicle entertainment is a tricky concept that should be handled carefully. Unfortunately for the personal navigation device (PND) industry, mobile phones -- and even more so, tablets -- make a pretty slick replacement device. But that's for functionality that serves a utility purpose.

In my opinion, new bells and whistles in the car should really only be for utility purposes, not entertainment. Replicating the smartphone in-vehicle is definitely an interesting proposition, but it can't compromise safety. I think the companies involved get this, but the entertainment demos keep popping up.

Granted, I once crashed my SUV into my house when I mixed up the gas and brake pedal, so my driving skills may be worse than average. Even so, adding more distractions to the car just seems like a bad idea for everyone.

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Reporter, Light Reading Mobile

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DCITDave 12/5/2012 | 5:10:11 PM
re: Your Car Is Not a Cell Phone

So does picking up my kid from school. And yet most of the time I do it anyway.


re: "although it still introduces a lot of new distractions."

melao2 12/5/2012 | 5:10:09 PM
re: Your Car Is Not a Cell Phone

What is the difference between using hands-free and talking to the passenger beside you inside the car?


That is why I don't get the ban on hands-free. Should we ban passengers also? :)

paolo.franzoi 12/5/2012 | 5:10:09 PM
re: Your Car Is Not a Cell Phone

According to Mythbusters you are correct and we need to ban radios as well.


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seven

melao2 12/5/2012 | 5:10:05 PM
re: Your Car Is Not a Cell Phone

One cannot expect that people will stop to make stupid mistakes.I think everyone has made their fair share of stupid mistakes while driving.


Of course we try to mitigate the risks in driving with some regulations, but i think there is a limit on what you should forbid inside the car.


In my opinion, in the end of the day better driving education would suffice.


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paolo.franzoi 12/5/2012 | 5:10:03 PM
re: Your Car Is Not a Cell Phone

&nbsp;


I am not trying to argue about what is a good or a bad idea.&nbsp; I think the point is if you are not paying 100% attention to driving, then you are more likely to have an accident.&nbsp; It matters less what the activity that is distracting you is compared to the fact that you are distracted.&nbsp; We focus on the cell phone thing but eating, doing makeup, texting, reading a map, reading a newspaper, and (yes I have seen this) reading a book are just as bad.&nbsp; If you are really engaged with a conversation with a passenger, then you are distracted.


Due to our commuter culture Americans tend to have things that make driving more like a mini-house.&nbsp; It took Mercedes-Benz awhile to figure that out with something as simple as a coffee cup holder.&nbsp; You don't drink your coffee while driving on the Autobahn.&nbsp; Who is right?


seven


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melao2 12/5/2012 | 5:10:02 PM
re: Your Car Is Not a Cell Phone

You are 100% correct.


It is just that sometimes it bothers me some restrictions that actually are related to misbehaviour, not to the restricted thing (or device in this case).


:)

CAS1956 12/5/2012 | 5:09:59 PM
re: Your Car Is Not a Cell Phone

Speaking as someone, who in the last 24 hours was: run off the highway onto the shoulder by a guy talking on his handheld who didn't see me, watched a truck go barreling through a red light (on his cell phone), get cut off by another cell phone talker who decided to make a left turn from the far right lane AND had a woman in front of me slow down to 10 MPH in the acceleration lane of an on ramp so she could light a cigarette -- I couldn't agree more.&nbsp; If it means you have to have one hand off the wheel, fiddling with something for an extended period of time then it doesn't belong in the front seat of the car.


And if anyone in government is reading this - don't waste your time with the laws because the ones we have aren't enforced.


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