Consumer study highlights growing importance of connected cars

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Half of all drivers would consider switching to another brand of car if it offered connected car services, according to a new report. 

The joint study by AT&T Drive Studio and Ericsson concluded that connected car features are being viewed as increasingly important by consumers and having more influence in purchasing decisions. 

For the study, AT&T Drive Studio and Ericsson surveyed 7,500 customers in the US, Brazil, China, Germany and Japan who said they were likely to purchase a car in the next five years.

Half of those asked said they would switch brands to a comparable one in order to get connected car services, while 72 percent said they would delay their purchase for a year to get a vehicle from their preferred brand with connected car features. 

Almost two-thirds said they would consider such features important in their next purchase after learning about them. 

In terms of familiarity with connected car features, 74 percent of respondents said they knew about roadside assistance services, second to navigation and real-time traffic features, which both polled 72 percent.

Seventy-one percent of respondents said they were familiar with vehicle remote start abilities, while 70 percent acknowledged music streaming services.

Usage-based insurance tracking and Wi-Fi hotspot were the least known-about features, with just 52 percent and 50 percent of those surveyed saying they were aware of such technology. 

Ericsson CMO Arun Bhikshesvaran commented: "What we are seeing in this data is a clear signal that connected car features and services are becoming an important factor in a consumer's purchase decision.  

“The study shows that a transformation is occurring on a global scale, to a world where consumers expect Connected Car services across all markets and models… we are just now entering a new era of Connected Car innovation that will integrate all aspects of a person's life. 

In July, a study by Telefónica found that three in four customers are interested in connected car technology, with 73 percent saying safety ad diagnostic features were the most important.

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