UX Innovation > In-Vehicle UX Blog

Pioneer AppRadio Fails to Deliver Compelling In-Vehicle App Experience

by Chris Schreiner | Sep 20, 2011

With the automotive infotainment focus squarely on how to deliver smartphone apps to consumers in the car, Strategy Analytics Automotive Consumer Insights is conducting user benchmarks of these new and innovative systems. Our recent report on the Pioneer AppRadio examined how well iPhone apps were integrated and presented to the user, as well as the overall experience of the head unit.

The report “Pioneer AppRadio Suffers from Inconsistent Interface” suggests that while we can see the potential, the AppRadio falls well short. The AppRadio in inconsistent in how users can interact with lists and list items between music and other functions. In some functions, users can interact with the AppRadio much like the iPhone, using the swipe gesture and directly touching screen items to select them. In other functions, however, users have to use up and down arrow keys to scroll and an “OK” button to select an item instead of directly touching it.

Additionally, we found the following user experience issues with the Pioneer AppRadio:

  • Text entry for applications had to be done on the iPhone and not on the display.
  • Many applications had no method to exit and move to another application unless the user did so via the phone.
  • Icons on the radio were not immediately intuitive to users.
  • Setting radio presets was not intuitive, as users could not press and hold a current preset to set it to a new frequency.

We will continue our focus on in-vehicle apps, with an evaluation of the Parrot ASTEROID aftermarket unit coming soon, as well as publishing best practice UX recommendations for the delivery of in-vehicle apps.

Clients of Automotive Consumer Insights can  access the Pioneer AppRadio report here.

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