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View Poll Results: Your preference?
Touchscreen 42 16.67%
Buttons, knobs & switches 210 83.33%
Voters: 252. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 28th August 2015, 10:17   #46
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Default Re: Touchscreen / Feather Touch Controls: Boon or Bane?

I absolutely hate touchscreens, they're like the EPS of the tech world. It still make a lot of typos on my phone and I am really looking forward to get a BlackBerry Bold than this. I really don't feel the need for a TC in cars,please let cars be cars and not a bunch of metal with gizmos. Also,buttons look better IMO, especially at night. Analogue > Digital for me here.
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Old 28th August 2015, 10:40   #47
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Default Re: Touchscreen / Feather Touch Controls: Boon or Bane?

While touch screens do create serious safety concerns. The recent Honda City and Jazz are having Touch sensitive AC controls as well which is not the way to go. I would still like to have the old school knobs or the better looking rotating wheels than the touch sensitive controls for atleast the AC. But the modern day touch screen ICE systems are great as they are a central repository for all functions. I would prefer having a voice recognition system to go with it which is responsive and allows to control everything by talking so that one don't need to take the eyes of the road or hands of the wheel. Unfortunately these type of systems are considered extreme luxury in India and cost exorbitantly high which most of the common people cannot afford. So hard reality is be content with what's available in your own budget.
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Old 28th August 2015, 10:53   #48
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Default Re: Touchscreen / Feather Touch Controls: Boon or Bane?

Look at the functions that is integrated into the touch screen
1. Audio
2. Video
3. GPS/phone based navigation
4. Bluetooth telephony
5. SMS handling
6. Central locking handling
7. Service instructions
8. Reversing video/sensor
9. Air conditioning

I feel that an integrated video display is needed to use and customize all these different functions. Because you would be looking at a dashboard cluttered with displays.

That out of way, we come to the point of controlling these functions. Using the example of the Zest, the XT versions,have the touchscreen system + buttons and the rest depend just on buttons. The entire system is very cleanly supported by steering mounted controls and voice recognition. I exclusively use the steering controls for forwarding or going to the next song. I can select the temperature needed for the Automatic climate control using a rotary button, easily reachable by finger with your hand on the gearshift. The rest of the functions are not needed while driving the vehicle, or do not need your input to run (e.g.reverse parking video).

Coming to the point of using a touchscreen for the inputs itself. If a system is not amply supported by steering controls and voice recognition, then yes, while driving, it is a pain. But if you do away with touchscreen, the user would have to resort to turning knobs and pressing buttons for multiple options which would tire the user out especially in the age when everyone is accustomed to the touch screen's ease of input.

Summary: I think screens are definitely required for integrating multiple functions. I feel touchscreen is needed to give complex inputs. But having to resort to touchscreen ALONE for AC controls is maddening.

Remaining neutral for now.
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Old 28th August 2015, 11:23   #49
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Default Re: Touchscreen / Feather Touch Controls: Boon or Bane?

Having used to many types of interfaces in all my cars, I find Touch screens are biggest safety hazard. I have recently got a Jazz, believe me, I find the ICE a big distraction. The worst part is the a/c controls too are touch sensitive. Whenever I try to control something on the ICE, my fingers always end up touching the a/c settings invariably changing them.

However, I like the iDrive interface in my 320d. It has big non-touch screen with button controls. Their philosophy is to not take your hand out of steering wheel and hence they have mounted most of the functions on the steering wheel. Other options are moved to rotating knobs and dedicated buttons.

At the same time, too many buttons are a downer too. I would definitely stay away from touch screens as much as possible.

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Old 28th August 2015, 11:55   #50
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Default Re: Touchscreen / Feather Touch Controls: Boon or Bane?

Call me old fashioned, but I prefer buttons and switches. They're just so much simpler to use. Touchscreens are great to use and help unclutter the dashboard, but on the move I'd say they're rather dangerous. Ever so often on a bumpy road, it's like threading a needle, hoping that you hit the right option on the screen. A touchscreen climate control in my book is the definition of stupid.
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Old 28th August 2015, 11:59   #51
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Default Re: Touchscreen / Feather Touch Controls: Boon or Bane?

Any day a rotary knob as a touch is not a "safe" perspective while driving.
Also, a touch here or there resultant from keeping the eyes glued to the road will give different results.
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Old 28th August 2015, 12:10   #52
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Default Re: Touchscreen / Feather Touch Controls: Boon or Bane?

And all these years, I was thinking I am old fashioned when the world seemed to readily adopt the touchy screens !

Based on my preference, Only the ICE should be incorporated in a touch screen. I used to hate steering mounted controls but began to live with it. The rest should definitely be old school knobs, sliders etc.
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Old 28th August 2015, 12:17   #53
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Default Re: Touchscreen / Feather Touch Controls: Boon or Bane?

Of course buttons and knobs are far more practical and logical. I can't really see the point in these new age cars offering touch controls for AC. It's so distracting Besides, the sense of satisfaction one gets while turning a knob to set the temperature or fan speed...priceless!

But I'm all for the iDrive/MMI systems present in the Germans. Intuitive, logical and safe!
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Old 28th August 2015, 12:37   #54
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Default Re: Touchscreen / Feather Touch Controls: Boon or Bane?

I love the feel of a button and have expressed so earlier. Perhaps instead of capacitive touch control, programmable gesture control is the way to go
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Old 28th August 2015, 13:20   #55
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Default Re: Touchscreen / Feather Touch Controls: Boon or Bane?

I voted for buttons knobs and controls, but i love our zest's touchscreen and the nice display (Nice to show off ) - When I have my wifey at front seat she controls them if it's me driving solo/with people not used to the controls - I use knob's /voice commands.

No need to take eye's off the road anyway
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Old 28th August 2015, 14:37   #56
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Default Re: Touchscreen / Feather Touch Controls: Boon or Bane?

I am sure we get used to the features. Our hands develop a brain of their own . gradually the amount of time spent with your eyes off the road will be the same, irrespective of touchscreen or knobs. I am sure we spend less than a second to locate any button/panel on the dash. Its not that our eyes are off the road for >5 seconds & on busy roads.

In a way, this topic is also as subjective as looks of a car. Everyone has their own opinion, however i feel the time spent in accessing them is borderline.
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Old 28th August 2015, 16:22   #57
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Default Re: Touchscreen / Feather Touch Controls: Boon or Bane?

I prefer a screen which can be controlled by knobs. Touch interface can be there as an option but when I am driving I find it easier to use knobs or simply use steering controls.
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Old 28th August 2015, 19:55   #58
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Default Re: Touchscreen / Feather Touch Controls: Boon or Bane?

I voted for buttons and knobs. But there are positives and negatives on both sides.

One of the downsides of physical buttons and knobs, as has already been mentioned earlier in previous posts, is that you have only as much real estate on the dashboard. With our cars getting advanced and getting new features with every release / refresh - there will be a saturation. You just wont have any space left (unless someone comes out with a dashboard design that has drawers - and panels placed in each drawer

For the touchscreens, another big issue I believe will also be the costs of replacements. While you 'may' be able to replace only the defective knobs and switches, with the touchscreens its the digital world - either a 1 or a 0. Not to mention that a failure of the screen will lead to a complete loss of control which will not be the case of dedicated physical buttons and knobs.
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Old 29th August 2015, 06:51   #59
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Default Re: Touchscreen / Feather Touch Controls: Boon or Bane?

Coming across this thread, I now realize I can do 90% of functions in my car three ways Touch screen panel, Physical buttons on dash and Voice command.
But I prefer to use buttons for most of the functions including phone dialing, music system, aircon. For GPS navigation I use touch screen mostly and I barely ever used voice commands.

So for most commonly used functions buttons are boon, and for complex functions like setting time, speed limit, alarm, system check etc touchscreen makes the job easy.

Last edited by cowboy45 : 29th August 2015 at 06:55.
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Old 29th August 2015, 11:56   #60
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Default Re: Touchscreen / Feather Touch Controls: Boon or Bane?

As much as most of us would still prefer our buttons and knobs, I'll have to say touch screens are the way forward. It does add a certain premium feel to the cabin and of course, makes it easier for features like AVN, Rear cameras and accessing music folders etc. Having said that, both my current cars (Punto and i10) still have the traditional button and knob layout and it's not like I have too many complaints about it. Yeah, I'd be a lot easier to access my music folder and find particular songs on my pen drive if I had a touchscreen though!
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