Self-driving cars must avoid psyching out occupants


As we begin to approach the future of self-driving cars and fully autonomous vehicles, the auto industry must pay closer attention to gaining and keeping human trust in this enabling technology.

In a feature from last week’s WardsAuto UX Conference, strategy director Nate Giraitis, explored several levels of human needs in the future of self-driving cars. Having spent the past few years identifying key human insights that propel innovation in the auto industry, Nate explains that activities in autonomous vehicles will vary based on the number of occupants, but that solo drivers would focus a lot on maximizing productivity. With self-driving vehicles representing the biggest transportation change “since we took the horse away from the carriage,” Nate sees us on the cusp of another revolutionary change. “Now, we’re taking the driving away from the driver.”

Nate works on large scale design projects for Smart Design, helping his clients focus on building customer experiences by getting to the root of people’s emotional and behavioral needs. At Wards Auto UX Conference, he appeared alongside Chris Rockwell, CEO of Lextant, Chris Schreiner of Strategy Analytics, and Alan Manna of auto supplier Bosch in the session: What are people really going to do in autonomous cars?. Each panelist spoke to different challenges spanning safety to entertainment, and how product and service developers need to understand the psychological issues that come with the transition to fully autonomous vehicles.

Read on for the full article, or review the entire Wards Auto conference special report.

Oct 2017