Has your tech ever gone wild?
Occasionally stuff happens and I call it “Tech gone Wild”.
When in the US we hired a car to drive from JFK airport in New York up to Boston to visit a friend.
We got upsold in a great way at the car rental counter to a brand new vehicle with an inbuild GPS system, heated AND air conditioned seats, the whole works!
Whilst a GPS system in a vehicle isn’t unusual these days, in this car it was different.
We got into the car and started to set things up for our drive, move the mirrors, the seats etc. We went to input the address of our destination only to find there was no way to type the address in.
I checked all the options, even tried going to the menu, but couldn’t find any way to type in our destination details.
It turned out the GPS system was voice activated only!
No problem, I’ve got a voice right?
So, I talked out the destination address exactly as it was listed on our printed out paperwork (we call that Plan B in our family!), but I kept getting either a “cannot find location” message, or an hourglass flashing on the screen as it tried to locate our destination. I even tried talking in an American accent!
We finally decided to contact the GPS “help desk,” which was part of the vehicle features, to find out how to deal with our challenge.
The GPS help desk said the GPS was voice activated only, but it didn’t matter that it didn’t recognise my accent, we could simply reach out to them when we wanted to go somewhere, and they would input the destination into our vehicle’s GPS!
Now we only hired the car for three days, and even for that length of time it didn’t seem practical to have to go through this process every time we wanted to drive somewhere, so we went back to the rental car desk, explained what was happening and that we wanted a “down grade” instead. I think we may be the first people to have asked them for that!
It truly was tech gone wild!
The moral of the story? New technology doesn’t always make things easier, better or faster.
In fact, for some people, it can make it harder to do the things we want to do – like get to Boston to visit our friend.