Study: Smartphones Preferred Over In-Car Navigation Systems

By | January 25, 2013
Are factory-installed navigation systems becoming harder for the average person to use? According to the J.D. Power and Associates 2012 U.S. Navigation Usage and Satisfaction Study, there has been a thirteen point decrease in satisfaction from 2011. When looking at the different categories surveyed, ease of use has consistently declined twenty-five points year after year. With the development and updated sophistication of smartphones, many owners are turning away from their factory-installed navigation, and to their phones for navigational purposes.  According to the study, 47-percent of vehicle owners indicate they use a downloaded application on their smartphone for navigation in their vehicle, compared with 37-percent in 2011. The key problems with the factory navigation are input and selection controls at six out of ten most frequent problems, with text size and limited street names displayed on the maps the remaining four lesser problems.
But shouldn't voice activation counteract these issues? "Smartphones and natural voice recognition have raised owner expectations across all vehicle segments, and manufacturers are not yet meeting these demands," says Mike VanNieuwkuyk, executive director of global automotive at J.D. Power and Associates. The demand on the manufacturers to constantly integrate new technology into their navigation systems to compete with that of smartphones is making the factory-installed navigation system become part of a media package and no longer a standalone component. Even with all the negative responses to these navigation systems, owners of the Chrysler 300 Series, Dodge Charger, and Porsche Cayenne have indicated that the systems installed in these cars perform well in all factors of the survey. Source: J.D. Power and Associates