Home > Mobile Communications, Vendors > Would you rather text than drive, or why Google is spending money on self-driven cars

Would you rather text than drive, or why Google is spending money on self-driven cars

May 27, 2012

If you buy a phone from AT&T, it comes with this sticker:

But is it sincere – At&t are still making a lot of money from text messages – and has it any chance of changing the behavior of the texting-drivers?

I doubt it.

In fact, I’m afraid that most people aren’t that interested in driving anymore. They would rather be texting, updating their status on Facebook, pining pictures on Pinterest, or even watching ad sponsored shows. Anything but watching the road and being focused on driving.

For them, self driven cars would be a god-send. The convenience of individual transportation, without the pain of actually driving a car.

For Google also, self-driven cars make a lot of sense. Google make 90% of their money serving ads to the users of their Internet services. So far, from their point of view, the hours that people spend driving their cars and not watching their on-line ads are a lost opportunity. Freeing the drivers from the chore of actually driving their cars would immediately translate into more eyeballs for advertisers, and more revenue for them.

For a car nut like me, that’s too bad. It means that 5 years from now, driving may be more like this (left) than that (right).

The dashboard of an early prototype of Google’s self driven car

Porsche 911 (1968)
Driving in its purest form.
From http://www.thegentlemanstopcoat.com

And maybe ten years from now, windshields will become obsolete, replaced by some new form of wide screen Google TV. Paid for by the ads.

For those who love cars, check this review of a magnificent Porsche 911 (1968) at DRIVEN.urbandaddy.com.

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