Aug 21, 2020 - Technology

Cameras are the tech that car buyers want

a car with a plus sign floating over it
Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Consumers want more camera views in their vehicles, but don't care for gesture controls, according to the J.D. Power 2020 U.S. Tech Experience Index (TXI) Study.

Why it matters: New technology can be a big factor in deciding which vehicle to buy, but high-tech features need to be intuitive and reliable — or consumers will get frustrated and feel they've wasted their money, the study found.

The state of play: Car owners like an extra set of eyes: Rear-view mirror cameras are rated highest, followed by cameras that let you "see through" trailers or provide a ground view of blind spots.

Gesture controls get the finger: Flicking your hand at the controls rather than touching knobs or screens is prone to problems. The majority (61%) of owners use the technology less than half of the time they drive.

Driver-assist functions are suspect: Most drivers don't trust technologies that control acceleration, braking and steering — the building blocks for more automated driving — suggesting carmakers have work to do.

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