User Experience: Talking to my car vs pressing buttons


How fast would it be to change a radio station from AM to FM? Fast.

More and more cars – mine included – now comes with voice-activation for systems control.

At first, I thought this was kinda cool.

Now I don’t, because it takes me longer to change radio stations than it used to with simple buttons.

Recently, while driving and listening to FM, I wanted to change to AM.

Here’s what I did:

  1. Press voice command button
  2. Wait for voice prompt
  3. Prompt: “Say a command”
  4. I say “Play FM” (Out of habit, I said ‘FM’ when I meant ‘AM’)
  5. I hear the three-note “I understand you” chime.
  6. Radio stays on FM station.
  7. Press voice command button again
  8. Wait for voice prompt
  9. Prompt: “Say a command”
  10. I say “Play AM”
  11. I hear the 3-note “I understood you” chime
  12. Radio tunes to AM station.

Elapsed time: 23 seconds.

Cool technology, but not better.

The simplest way to add value is to save the user time” – Jay Rosen

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