Controlling your car with your smartphone?

With the technology we have today, almost nothing is impossible. Life has become so convenient, we can do almost anything ever-so-efficiently with just a few clicks.

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Good Life Meme (Source: MemeSuper)

Hungry? Use UberEats and have food delivered right to your door!

Need to get rid of some old clothes? Snap a few pictures and sell away on eBay!

On a diet and watching your daily exercise count? Any smart phones or smart watches will happily do!

In fact, you can even lock, unlock or switch on your car with any smart phones or watches.


Blue Link, is a mobile app by Hyundai that transforms users’ mobile phones into a remote control for their Hyundai vehicles. Users can remote start, stop, lock or unlock their car from afar or even set the air temperature of the car in advance. They can also access monthly vehicle health reports or use the app as a GPS for directions!

Take a look at their video ad!

Source: HyundaiUSA on YouTube


Personally I think this app is a great idea. Considering that people are so attached to their mobile devices nowadays, there’s a higher chance they remember to take their phones instead of car keys out of their house in the morning. And according to Google, there are what’s called “micro-moments” where people turn to mobile devices for their needs. Moments like “I want to do this”, “I want to buy this” or “I want to know this”. In order for businesses to appeal to customers during these micro-moments, Google recommends the three following strategies:

  • Be There
  • Be Useful
  • Be Quick  

I think Hyundai successfully incorporated all these aspects into their Blue Link app. It is convenient, relevant and efficient. There are useful explanations of their vehicle’s health statistics, and relevant contact information for further assistance. All of which makes Blue Link a great app. However, a recent news article suggests otherwise.

According to Bleeping Computer, the Blue Link app had a serious security flaw that exposed their users’ sensitive information, allowing hackers to track down, unlock and potentially steal Hyundai cars. Luckily, no vehicles were stolen due to this but Hyundai has since patched the flaw and provided a new updated version of Blue Link for their users.


This made me think… no matter how good a mobile app is, a security flaw like this can just bring everything down hill. Just like Tesla with their autopilot function. Since its autopilot launch in 2014, there has been many serious and even fatal car crashes involving their autopilot function. It has since sparked many controversial debates on this new advanced technology.

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Tesla Autopilot (Source: Engadget)

Similarly with Blue Link, I think it is important for Hyundai and other businesses to prioritize their consumers’ safety and interest before designing an appealing and innovative product or service, especially in the digital or technological world. That is because, even if a business successfully attracts a consumer to its products, a security breach will only leave a negative impression on the consumer. Businesses should focus on protecting its consumers’ data and interest and not rush into designing the latest gimmick to attract them.


If you were a Hyundai car owner, would you still trust and use Blue Link after such a security flaw? Do you agree with me that businesses should not rush into developing products with the latest technology but instead, prioritize the fundamental functions to protect its consumers first? Share your thoughts!

 

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4 thoughts on “Controlling your car with your smartphone?

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  1. I’ve read about something similar, where people can unlock their house with a similar technology. Whilst this is available, you can still manually unlock your door like we do currently. I think I’d be all for trying it, as long as insurance still covers it!

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    1. Yea I’ve heard of similar ideas like that too. I guess it really depends on how willing we are as consumers to accept such risks that come with technology nowadays. Thanks for sharing!

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  2. Oh very interesting!
    To be honest – In my opinion we shouldn’t worry about that too much, because the autonomous technology is tested so often in a huge variety of situations.
    But I agree.. There is of course a residual risk..
    In almost every new car – especially ones of the higher segment- Have already autonomous functions in it. For example the cruise control in combination with the distance radar, called ACC: Its semi-autonomous! With this technology the driver has only to steer the car. This tech has been around for many of years and works well! And if there is a dangerous situation which the car doesn’t recognise, the driver has only to operate the brake pedal to switch off the function and manually take over the car.
    The autonomous technology is very good, BUT every driver still has to keep an eye on the traffic, because it’s still not perfect!
    But in the future …………….?!
    In the topic of autonomous driving there are other issues I worry about:
    Hacking the connection between Smartphone and car, hacking the connection between car and car and who is responsible for a crash caused by a autonomous function (the driver himself, the engineer, the company?).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow, thanks for sharing! I agree with you, ACC works great but the driver still needs to concentrate on the road as it’s still not 100% perfect! So the engineers and companies really need to ensure their technology is secure and tested (hack-free) in order to avoid being deemed responsible. As for the future? I am very excited to see what ACC can transform into. I guess Google’s Waymo self driving cars are already the beginning of our possible future! 🙂 Thanks for commenting!

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