A little story from my past, a big example on how smart ideas could spread much faster in small start-ups.
Around 3 years ago, I was discussing with the team at FCA on what services we would have needed to make Uconnect even smarter and more useful to our drivers. We came up with many ideas but one of the most exciting was to transform the head unit int a virtual driver to talk with during long journeys.
Someone capable of helping the driver (eg predicting destinations and keeping the driver connected to his network of colleagues, friends and relatives), of playing a game (we also checked the technical feasibility of having Trivial Pursuit on the screen), of having a general conversation (maybe during the boring nights while driving alone), of entertaining somehow the driver and make a more funny or productive use of the time spent in the vehicle. Much more of the tiny TomTom prototype I’ve been shown for commuting, and obviously much less than an in-person co-pilot.
Unfortunately the company was not ready for the challenge at that specific time (innovation in big corporations is sometimes a matter of philosophy and political games rather than business): this vision was deemed more an unfeasible futuristic crazy idea rather than an achievable target from our product development. I still have the slides 🙂
After some years, I’m more than happy someone else took the challenge up and will bring on the market the product. Today I backed on Kickstarter Chris – a digital co-driver with artificial intelligence – by German Autolabs.
As Holger G. Weiss is on this project, I’m sure he and his team will deliver a great product. Well done and good luck my friends!