Krystal Temple

Digital Driving in the 21st Century

The Modern Family Road Trip

Today’s families are constantly on-the-go. Whether driving the kids to school, cruising over to the office or taking a family road trip, families are spending more and more time behind the wheel. In fact, the average American drives nearly 13,500 miles a year, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation. That’s the equivalent of driving from Seattle to Miami and back more than two times!

Although families aren’t zipping around in Jetsons-style hovercrafts, cars have come a long way since the first steam engine automobiles built in the 1700s. As I mentioned in a blog post last year, cars have become much more than just a mode of transportation. They’re equipped with technology features that connect the driving experience to the rest of our lives, making family excursions easier than ever before and more enjoyable for everyone.

Nearly all new cars on the road today feature in-vehicle infotainment systems or IVI. These systems include all of the digital applications inside a vehicle, such as music players, phones and GPS map displays. For families always on-the-move, IVI is essential – it not only provides drivers with streamlined, digitalized content, but it also gives passengers (read: restless kids on a road trip) a form of entertainment.

In recent years, all consumers – families included – have shown an increased interest in IVI systems. In fact, according to an October 2011 survey from Strategy Analytics, in-vehicle connectivity and basic online content is expected to be one of the most critical factors people consider when buying a new car by 2016.

To make sure families have a convenient and enjoyable driving experience, Intel is working with automakers including Nissan, Hyundai, Kia and Toyota on product development and research initiatives. By tapping its resources in personal computing, software, security and cloud computing technologies, Intel is an example of one company bringing a new level of innovation to the modern car.

Do you have IVI features in your car? How has IVI contributed to easier, more enjoyable road trips for your family? Let me know in the comments below!

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