Tablet computers will change road trips

One of the big push for carmakers in recent years has been in-vehicle entertainment. Having a video player in the back seat so kids could watch movies has become a critical component of cars and minivans aimed at families.

But now with the explosion of gadgets like smartphones and tablet computers, you wonder whether in-car wi-fi will become even more important in the coming years.

Even younger kids now expect gadgets like the iPod touch, and many families will now have multiple tablet computers. The iPad is still a huge hit, and now you have newer and cheaper entries like the Amazon Kindle. So instead of having the kids fight over which movie to play in the back seat, each kid can entertain themselves with their own movie or TV show. This is particularly true as kids get older.

But it’s not limited to kids. Guys love to play poker and some women love things like bingo. So if you have wi-fi in the car, your son can be playing online chess or poker with friends while your wife is playing online bingo. You daughter meanwhile might be streaming a vampire movie on Netflix. Anything is possible.

Of course this raises safety issues as well, as we need to make sure drivers don’t participate! That’s where Pandora comes in handy . . .


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