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Old 10th October 2014, 17:26   #31
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Default Re: Dearth of OEM Touchscreen Head-unit vendors in India?

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Originally Posted by CrAzY dRiVeR View Post
Humble request to explain why we are ridiculing member 'smartcat' and his friend here? ...
Huh? No one is being 'ridiculed' here, other than the (wrong) information. Please at least read properly before taking offense and questioning.

It is not correct to make "2+2=5" inferences without actually going through facts. Your associating Bosch "labor unrest" was too much of a conjecture. @smartcat at least proffered a logical possibility, not a wild conjecture.

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... Pride in a organisation shouldn't mean blind bias- and a spade should be called just that- a spade. ... 'insider info' ...
Pride in the organization that one works for imposes the responsibility of verifying facts before flapping one's mouth outside it. If one is not aware, one should read one's employment contract about company information (talking about company's activities outside). One should also be aware of the repercussions of not being responsible with one's words and actions.

Both Bosch and Maruti Suzuki know how to deal with the errors. Our discussion is about why things can't be better to start with.
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Old 10th October 2014, 18:05   #32
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Default Re: Dearth of OEM Touchscreen Head-unit vendors in India?

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Slightly OT...

But I wonder if touchscreen Head units are really a good idea, it will mean more usage in terms of gestures, etc needing your hand to be focused in operating it which could result in a serious safety issue while driving. More so with the screens suffering from visibility issues due to glare, etc

I'd rather use a head unit with simple buttons to operate it with a remote or controls on the steering wheel, anyone with me ?
I am totally with you. I have been making this point again and again in this forum. For the life of me, I cant understand why anyone would want to fiddle with these units and apps WHILE driving? What am I missing? Isnt this a serious safety issue? Blind controls (knobs, buttons) are the best way to navigate and operate car controls. As a community, we MUST advocate safety over frills. Having these huge screens is an absolute distraction. For people who have read my other posts on this subject, this may seem repetitive...I am sorry about that.

BTW, if you are wondering if I am a tech-retard, I own every gadget conceivable across all OSes. I am a tech-freak. I use an iPad with an external GPS for navigation. iPad will be switched off and I depend only on the verbal instructions.

Last edited by bsdbsd : 10th October 2014 at 18:08. Reason: typos
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Old 10th October 2014, 18:13   #33
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Default Re: Dearth of OEM Touchscreen Head-unit vendors in India?

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I am totally with you. I have been making this point again and again in this forum. For the life of me, I cant understand why anyone would want to fiddle with these units and apps WHILE driving? What am I missing? Isnt this a serious safety issue? Blind controls (knobs, buttons) are the best way to navigate and operate car controls. As a community, we MUST advocate safety over frills. Having these huge screens is an absolute distraction. For people who have read my other posts on this subject, this may seem repetitive...I am sorry about that.

BTW, if you are wondering if I am a tech-retard, I own every gadget conceivable across all OSes. I am a tech-freak. I use an iPad with an external GPS for navigation. iPad will be switched off and I depend only on the verbal instructions.
Completely in sync.

Somethings should be left plain and simple.
Of late, I have seen some unnecessary additions that soon became the norm. Of course, later on the fad decreases and the same old(retro) designs are back:

1) Piano Black center consoles. - Some how looks cheap and is a finger magnet. Plus, the minute scratches looks magnified

2) Beige Interiors. Looks ok. But then this is India. Becomes very difficult to maintain. BTW, who ever though of giving the AC controls in a Dzire a beige outlook? Atrocious.

3) Touch screen HUs. Simple, understated, elegant. Why do a smart phone in something that requires a simple set up to operate.

Some companies are returning to the retro like:
1) Cruze all black interiors!!
2) Swift all black interiors

"Simplicity is the ultimate form of sophistication"
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Old 10th October 2014, 18:27   #34
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Default Re: Dearth of OEM Touchscreen Head-unit vendors in India?

Driving is an incredibly complex exercise. Especially in India. Unless something contributes to safety, it MUST not make it to the car. In hindsight, I think that these head unit vendors are contributing to safety by releasing non-functioning units, so that people don't use them or depend on them. I read somewhere that ESP is a software package which does not cost more than $50. Give me ESP any day over stupid head units. Where is Adaptive Cruise Control? Give me automotive technology over consumer technology trying to fit in automotive environment.

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Old 10th October 2014, 18:32   #35
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Default Dearth of OEM Touchscreen Head-unit vendors in India?

Agree to above posts. It should be a combination of touch screen and hard buttons for key functions. Say for eg. the RCD 510. Though it is touch screen and bug free, the hard controls like the volume knob on the left and the scroll knob on the right (for scrolling through Radio stations, tracks played, etc.) and other main source hard buttons lets a driver easily select what he wants. Atleast most of the key functions can be done without having to use the touch screen, add to it MFSW controls for such functions. Such systems are ideal until complete voice operated effective systems which are bug free are developed. Volvo is coming with a huge touch panel for the centre console for the new XC90. I am guessing, that would be the new age of such systems where one might not really require to shift focus from the road to access main functions. Since Volvo is one of the key car makers who has invented most of the safety features of present day automobiles, I would expect their touch screen interface to have such capabilities that does not effect road safety. Till such tech has proven to be safe and efficient, the best ones would be the ones mentioned above which is a combination of touch screen and hard buttons for key functions.



Now the topic is not exactly about touchscreens alone. Regarding that, yeah makers seem to be taking shortcuts and introducing HUs without proper R&D and investment which results in end consumers having to deal with bug filled experience. It takes immense resources to develop such error free systems. It might be part of cost cutting that proper development of such units are being compromised.

Last edited by ajaypjayaraj : 10th October 2014 at 18:48.
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Old 10th October 2014, 21:21   #36
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Default Dearth of OEM Touchscreen Head-unit vendors in India?

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Originally Posted by DerAlte View Post
Huh? No one is being 'ridiculed' here, other than the (wrong) information. Please at least read properly before taking offense and questioning.

It is not correct to make "2+2=5" inferences without actually going through facts. Your associating Bosch "labor unrest" was too much of a conjecture.
With full respect to your moderator status and age, I have read the posts multiple times before posting the question.

I have already mentioned I just suspect it. And in above posts, I have thanked you for correcting me. If the world was only based on true known facts- we wouldn't reach anywhere. Assumptions are made, which can go either ways when the fact comes out. I was wrong here and I duly apologised.
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Originally Posted by DerAlte View Post
@smartcat at least proffered a logical possibility, not a wild conjecture.

Pride in the organization that one works for imposes the responsibility of verifying facts before flapping one's mouth outside it.
What is the fact to be verified? The fact remains- the system was buggy then. It remains buggy now. Fact is that his statement remains valid.

Agreed with your point regarding talking out it outside- but then we wouldn't have spy pics or any such topics if that was the case. If we could post insider info regarding Ciaz launch which obviously was taken inside Maruti premises, why is smartcat at fault here for sharing his 'insider info'?

Anyways, I'll leave both above topics here. It's going OT. Let me just re-iterate that I have read the posts again and feel the same. But I'm not the one to take a stand here. Leaving it for better topics.
Quote:
Originally Posted by DerAlte View Post
Both Bosch and Maruti Suzuki know how to deal with the errors. Our discussion is about why things can't be better to start with.
Coming back to core topic- for something to get better, we need to know what went wrong in the first place. For Ciaz launch, the 'assumptions' we have till now point towards Bosch. There might be multiple reasons like low costs, but then- it's the failure of the vendor as well if they agreed to a cost which compromises on their quality. We also need to keep in mind that the issues with the HU compromised the launch and the goodwill of these companies, (with Maruti suffering customer booking cancellations thanks to Z+ not being available) something that should be the prime motive for any of these vendor companies - regardless of business conditions.

Any idea who are the OEM vendors for Honda Mobilio and TATA Zest?

Last edited by CrAzY dRiVeR : 10th October 2014 at 21:39.
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Old 11th October 2014, 01:14   #37
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Default Re: Dearth of OEM Touchscreen Head-unit vendors in India?

I guess there is an important underlying point being missed somehow. A manufacturer is not entirely to be blamed here for what essentially is an economic / financial issue and which may have is roots in customer behavior. As a general principle to change the current state of anything, anywhere, be it a product or a service, there must be an incentive inducing such change. What/ Where is the incentive for the manufacturer to invest more and produce/procure better quality product. Remember an incentive need not necessarily be financial. So what does a manufacturer gain out of additional investment, resources and diligence. Remember at the end of the day is all about business results and numbers and SLAs being met. I guess the same concept applies to other multitude of deficiencies that cars sold in India suffer from, however this discussion is specific to car infotainment systems only. Yet at the heart of the problems, it is the same fundamental issue. I guess there is no simple answer to this. In India the chalta hai attitude and the vast majority of car buyers focusing only on FE with relatively only a small chunk of buyers having that eye and ear for detail leave little incentive for the manufacturer to make the extra efforts. For that to change, one is effectively asking / hoping / paying for a paradigm shift in consumer behavior, in other words the incentive to change should come from the demand side first.
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Old 11th October 2014, 11:15   #38
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Default Re: Dearth of OEM Touchscreen Head-unit vendors in India?

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Question: Is there a dearth of OEM suppliers for reliable touchscreen head-units in India? If not, there's a business opportunity right there.
It might well be what you suggest.

Another aspect I can share from experience of having dealt directly with several of these manufacturers at India & global levels (one of the businesses for company I work for is automotive, supplying to european cars already and now trying for india also) the reason why you see such slow innovation in car ICE units is because of the way OEMs look at car design cycles. Typically lasting 5-7 years!

So 5 years in advance they will lock in most of the requirements/design etc and that is what you will get when they launch a brand new car - so for example in 2014 cars this spec was locked down in 2009/10 - so it feels 5 years old because it is and this is why everything in the car feels so ancient that a 5K phone can do more than what the car ICE system costing 20k can't.

There are some who are trying smarter solutions (like tata) where they want to move a software upgrade model by using an Android base or some kind of link where everything runs off your android phone - others are integrating apple's car play which will again be auto upgradeable - hence (hopefully) in the future we will see more current features and less bugs as well as feature addition post launch as well.
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Old 14th October 2014, 12:09   #39
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Default Re: Dearth of OEM Touchscreen Head-unit vendors in India?

I have been following Apple's CarPlay and Google's Android Auto closely and I can say that it isn't our solution to issues we have with buggy software in our ICE. Neither CarPlay nor Android Auto are operating systems for the ICE hardware. This isn't like Micromax or Lava making hardware that can run the Android OS and voila, you have a phone that is as feature rich and almost as good as more premium offerings from bigger player like Samsung.

OEMs are still going to have to make the hardware and software for their ICE systems. CarPlay and Android auto will almost run like an app on top of the OEM software and provide an interface to the phone functions. So yes, if you have a buggy phone dialer from the OEM, you get a better dialer with CarPlay. You have a buggy music interface to access music stored on your phone? Yes, CarPlay will give you the iOS music app you are so familiar with. Have a problem with your FM radio? Sorry, CarPlay and Android Auto will not have an answer for you. You will still have to rely on your ICE OEM's software for accessing FM Radio or CD or USB drive. See where this is going?

Software is going to get more and more complex with the inherent expectation that the same ICE support both CarPlay and Android Auto. What we really need is some one to come up with an open source platform for Car Audio just like we have Android for phones. Yes, they could very well use Android (the OS) as the base for the infotainment system. Perhaps, the Mozilla foundation and Ubuntu could have concentrated on developing such a solution for Car ICE rather than coming up with yet another phone OS which hardly has any traction.
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Old 14th October 2014, 14:32   #40
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Default Re: Dearth of OEM Touchscreen Head-unit vendors in India?

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Originally Posted by torque!! View Post
I have been following Apple's CarPlay and Google's Android Auto closely and I can say that it isn't our solution to issues we have with buggy software in our ICE. Neither CarPlay nor Android Auto are operating systems for the ICE hardware. This isn't like Micromax or Lava making hardware that can run the Android OS and voila, you have a phone that is as feature rich and almost as good as more premium offerings from bigger player like Samsung.

OEMs are still going to have to make the hardware and software for their ICE systems. CarPlay and Android auto will almost run like an app on top of the OEM software and provide an interface to the phone functions. So yes, if you have a buggy phone dialer from the OEM, you get a better dialer with CarPlay. You have a buggy music interface to access music stored on your phone? Yes, CarPlay will give you the iOS music app you are so familiar with. Have a problem with your FM radio? Sorry, CarPlay and Android Auto will not have an answer for you. You will still have to rely on your ICE OEM's software for accessing FM Radio or CD or USB drive. See where this is going?

Software is going to get more and more complex with the inherent expectation that the same ICE support both CarPlay and Android Auto. What we really need is some one to come up with an open source platform for Car Audio just like we have Android for phones. Yes, they could very well use Android (the OS) as the base for the infotainment system. Perhaps, the Mozilla foundation and Ubuntu could have concentrated on developing such a solution for Car ICE rather than coming up with yet another phone OS which hardly has any traction.
I agree the way by which the companies are trying to solve the IVI issues is not good, eg both the CarPlay and Auto are just dependant on the mobile devices and works like a secondary display for the mobile devices. But a few automotive specific OS are available like Tizen, QNX (CarPlay runs on this platform) that are evolved from GenIVI Alliance concept.

What I understand is to have an independent system with any OS either it be Android/QNX/Tizen that can support the mobile devices for phone related tasks, rest all should be done in the IVI system itself. For eg, a better UI on top of Android that connects to mobile devices

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Old 14th October 2014, 14:49   #41
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Default Re: Dearth of OEM Touchscreen Head-unit vendors in India?

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Originally Posted by CrAzY dRiVeR View Post
... but then we wouldn't have spy pics or any such topics if that was the case. If we could post insider info regarding Ciaz launch which obviously was taken inside Maruti premises, ...
Spy pics are obviously taken by outsiders, otherwise they wouldn't be called "spy pics", no? 'Insider info' regarding launch date is just not-yet-authorized dates *meant to go public* anyhow, and we treat it as such: unofficial info. Would you classify these, and an employee talking irresponsibly, in the same category?

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... why is smartcat at fault here for sharing his 'insider info'? ...
Who said @smartcat is at fault? You might have read the posts many times, but have you seen an accusation that you are taking umbrage to? Or is it an indirect interpretation that is disturbing you?

We are digressing too much without a reason, don't you think?
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Old 15th October 2014, 11:28   #42
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I'd like to address the point about what technologies car makers should and should not include. As someone mentioned earlier, car makers are commercial entities responding to demand. Consider the following :

1. Since we are an FE conscious market, manufacturers build some of the highest FE vehicles in the world for us.
2. Since we Indians have zero interest in safety (riders without helmets, women needn't wear helmets, highest number of road accident deaths in the world - I know I'm going to get some flak for this one), the overwhelming majority of vehicles sold are without airbags, ESP, and other features.

This is where economics suggests that a regulator should step in to correct market flaws:

1. Mandate that all cars should have a minimum set of safety features
2. Do (1) and provide a subsidy, so that costs are not passed on to the consumer. Personally, I believe this would be a fair and efficient use of taxpayer's funds

We already have excise cuts for sub-4m and sub-1.6l capacity vehicles. There is a strong case for regulators to make this a safer market as well.

Happy to discuss further.
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Old 6th November 2014, 12:46   #43
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Default Re: Dearth of OEM Touchscreen Head-unit vendors in India?

GM is running a project to implement Head Units with Android. GM is already using QNX, Linux, Windows Embedded in various systems.

Quote:
Within the Chevrolet brand alone, the Malibu and Cruze sedans use Blackberry Ltd.’s QNX, while the Tahoe SUV and Impala sedan run on Linux and the Sonic subcompact and Spark minicar use an operating system from Microsoft Corp.
This should clear path for other OEM suppliers by providing them a reference UI and system design. E.g:

Quote:
This means satisfying the rigorous demands from car companies, including that an Android infotainment system start up almost instantaneously when a driver turns the key in the ignition or pushes the “start” button.

And it would include App Store:

Quote:
“As you would expect, this next-generation infotainment solution will enable an app store, which allows this infotainment system to stay technologically relevant over the life cycle of the vehicle,” he told analysts. “Apps will be developed by General Motors, Harman and a bunch of other third parties
http://arstechnica.com/cars/2014/11/...-auto-in-2016/

http://www.autonews.com/article/2014...-supplier-says
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Old 5th February 2015, 09:15   #44
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Default Re: Dearth of OEM Touchscreen Head-unit vendors in India?

I often link this to the partial stripping down of vehicles when they are launched in India. The Santa Fe for example has a beautiful touchscreen system in the US, complete with advanced controls and snappy response times; here we have that tiny abomination that I can't get used to no matter how hard I try. We have come a long way - but wonder when we will see interior kits that are zero-compromise.
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Old 26th March 2015, 21:22   #45
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Default Re: Dearth of OEM Touchscreen Head-unit vendors in India?

Sad that the OEM touchscreen scene still leaves a lot to be desired.

I finally got my hands on a Ciaz petrol (review will be up shortly). The single bug in the car was its troublesome head-unit. Simply playing music via my smartphone didn't post a problem.

However, ask the touchscreen to multi-task and it would go bonkers. For instance, while streaming music, if I received a call, about 10% of the time, the screen would go dead or get stuck in a start / stop loop (see video below). Similarly, while listening to music, if I engaged reverse gear (and the touchscreen became the reversing camera's display), about 10% of the time, it would continually switch on & off. The only solution was to wait for a couple of minutes and hope that things got back to normal.

Check this video I shot of the touchscreen acting up. I experienced this several times a day. Additionally, I found the touchscreen's response times to be incredibly sluggish!

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