Buying a car is a major decision in one’s life which, as with the others, need to be dealt with utmost care and thought. The American car market offers a variety of options in terms of body sizes, cargo space, utility, luxury, and performance.
With technology improving by the passing minute, automobiles are the ones to embrace it the best outside of the IT and tech game. Cars nowadays have an array of sensors all around the car to make driving safe. The modern crop of cars comes with Bluetooth, rear-view cameras, ABS, airbags, EBD, etc as standard.
Cars like the 2021 Volkswagen Atlas and 2021 Toyota Highlander provide the best mix of everything mentioned above and come standard with sensors for forward-collision warning, automated emergency braking, cruise control, blind-spot monitoring, rear-cross-traffic alert.
Apart from the safety features, the cars come standard with efficient smartphone integration like Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Here, we list some of the features that one should always consider before purchasing a new car:
One thing that is a crucial part of a journey is entertainment – and it is one thing which all the cars do well in these times. The times of CD are gone and all the infotainment systems support music streaming services of choice. If either is not available, Bluetooth is always there to pair your phone and stream.
Apart from audio and music, the infotainment systems are capable of navigating through places either via in-built nav or via smartphone integration services. One thing to keep a tab on the data usage because the systems tend to suck the data pretty fast.
USB Power Ports
USB ports serve multiple functions but in today’s scenario, the ports are mostly used for charging the phone. Yes, there are wireless chargers onboard but to use that, you need to pay extra and also have a device that supports the same. USB ports also happen to be amazing devices to stream music from, in case you have a personal library you like to listen to.
Apple CarPlay or Android Auto
Tech giants Google and Apple are slowly taking over the smartphone integration market. The systems are similar in the functions they perform – sync with a smartphone, stream music, navigation, and make communication possible – but differ in what phone OS they connect to.
Apple CarPlay is exclusive to Apple devices and lets the driver access some applications via the infotainment system making life easy. Mostly, the system has to be connected via USB cable but many modern cars now support wireless integration of the same.
On the Android Auto side of things, you need to have a phone running Android 5.0 or higher to turn the car’s infotainment into an Android system. the Android Auto system does everything that Apple CarPlay does, but it can connect to both Android OS and iOS. It is primarily connected via USB cable but wireless integration is possible nowadays.
One thing which does well in both systems is voice assistant – Siri for CarPlay and Google Assistant for Android Auto. Voice recognition enables all the functions of the systems but without the driver touching any of the controls – thereby not causing a distraction.
Hands-Free Texting and Calling
Talking of voice assistant, one thing they do best enables hands-free calling and voice-to-text typing. In many cases, the driver takes his/her eyes off the road for some time, and boom! There’s a crash.
According to the NHTSA, these types of crashes have claimed nearly 3,477 deaths in 2015 alone. Although the systems may need to be worked upon in today’s cars, these systems are more or less perfect. Just say the buzzwords and you’re good to go.
The most important thing to look for is telematics on a car. What does it mean? Telematics can, in brief, monitor the car’s behavior and give out relevant readings for the same using the different sensors, GPS, and other diagnostic tech available. This data is then transferred to a centralized network and includes the car’s speed, location, mileage, engine status, fuel use, etc.
Also, with this system, there is real-time location tracking, traffic updates, information about nearby gas stations, etc.
The tech used in the automotive sector is on a rise with carmakers continuously working towards making the experience seamless. Companies like Tesla have even enabled in-car tech to change gears and control the car as a whole. With the convenience of the customer being the topmost priority, the above features are the bare minimum that one should look for!