I need Alexa in my car


In the last year’s statistics showed that technology is taking lives as teens and millennials are using their mobile devices while driving. According to Pew Research, the average American teen sends 60 texts in a day, which means lots of them might be read or written behind the wheel. The number of teens killed while texting and driving is also rising, painting a bleak image.

Another report from the American Automobile Association revealed that six in ten car accidents involving teens are caused by using a mobile device… More at TNW.

I suspect that almost all of us will admit to touching our phones while driving. Whether this is an increasing trend or not is hard to know, but with GPS, podcasts, music and so many more functions available, it can be hard to not quickly tap the screen to either get somewhere or change the entertainment you are listening to.

I have tried repositioning my iPhone, tried reducing the air conditioning and tried when the car is at a stop and still Siri is close to useless in such an environment. I gave up trying to play songs etc using Siri long ago and still revert to very occasionally tapping the screen.

Car Play may be more impressive, I will be honest and say I haven’t tried it, but the way Alexa works with all of the extra microphones would appear to be a better in-car solution.

“Alexa. Play the greatest hits of Meat Loaf” (that was a joke, who would ask such a thing?)

“Alexa, open Podcasts and play episode x of x podcast.”

With enough microphones, the car interaction would be completely audible and we have all of the technology we need now to make this work.

The sad fact is that Google understands me in the car, but Siri still cannot so maybe a few software improvements are needed as well.

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1 reply

  1. Okay, I’ll admit I didn’t look into this, but I’m sure the technology exists to reliably handle most things in a hands free way. Not saying Siri is the answer yet, but really. I’ve got a hands free speakerphone in my car. I’ve turned off Siri because the speakerphone does a better job of the basics. But we have speech to text technology. We have text to speech technology. The tricky one might be navigation, but it can’t be that hard. Mind you, wouldn’t you normally know where you’re going before you set off?

    As for CarPlay, I’m surprised that it isn’t considered as bad as a mobile device. The whole trick is for your attention to be on the road. If you’re fiddling with CarPlay or any similar device, then your attention isn’t on the road. But if it was voice activated, then it wouldn’t be any worse than talking to a person beside you. You wouldn’t even have to look at them.

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