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Cars as Mobile Media: New Directions in Australian Culture & Policy


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This presentation the conjuncture as we see a new phase of articulation of 2 mobility technologies: cars + cellular mobile.

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Cars as Mobile Media: New Directions in Australian Culture & Policy

  1. 1. Cars as Mobile Media: New Directions in Australian Culture & Policy Gerard Goggin (@ggoggin) & Jonathon Hutchinson (@dhutchman) Dept of Media & Communications, University of Sydney paper for Australian and New Zealand Communication Association (ANZCA) Melbourne, 2014
  2. 2. cars + mobiles (encore) • present conjuncture see new phase of articulation of 2 mobility technologies: cars + cellular mobile • cars as cultural technologies are designed around technology, protocols, design and development, use, global economies and regulation producing particular kinds of technological affordances • exploring several car manufacturers, this paper highlights the mediation processes currently impacting on mobile phone, applications and driverless technology use within the car manufacturing industries • creation of new socio-political relations through the spatio-temporal lens of the politics of mobilities • the paper will also raise question of how mobile technologies are woven into the social imaginaries of inclusion, exclusion & exchange
  3. 3. 3 Cars + Mobiles 1.0 big bulky 1G mobiles, needed to be installed in cars to be usable
  4. 4. cars + mobiles 2.0 people like using mobiles in cars, but this raises risk & safety issues – requiring research, evolution of new social norms (q.v. ‘etiquette’), behaviour modification, risk management, ‘hands-free’ kits See: Jessop, Glenn. ‘A Brief History of Mobile Telephony: The Story of Phones and Cars’ Southern Review: Communication, Politics & Culture, Vol. 38, No. 3, 2006: 43-60
  5. 5. cars + mobiles 3.0 • mobile phone is a ‘social fact’, ‘taken-for-granted’ (Ling, 2012) • with mobile Internet —smartphones, apps, Wi-Fi, and households ecologies of convergent media — cars designed for drivers and passengers to segue from work, home, play etc into car & continue mobile, social, and locative media use (Goggin, 2012); cars fast becoming a mobile comms environment in own right. • mobiles + Internet — + associated network technologies — are key to ‘driver-assist technologies’ (by car manufacturers) or ‘driverless cars’ (e.g. Google); such ‘autonomous’ vehicles rely upon mix of networked tech & communicative tech + road & others infrastructures + different kinds of labour
  6. 6. Cars + Mobiles 3.0: Internet of mobilities
  7. 7. Moving Media • this research is part of Australian Research Council Discovery project Moving Media: Mobile Internet and New Policy Modes (CIs: Gerard Goggin, Tim Dwyer, Fiona Martin; researcher: Jonathon Hutchinson); see blog • mapping responses of policy institutions and actors to the range of forms of mobile Internet and the new kinds of governance these are eliciting • Using IAMCR Mapping Global Media Policy project database to do this - • Case studies on: news diversity; locative media; connected cars; wearable computers (Google Glass);
  8. 8. brief history of Internet in cars 1st phase (2003-07): academic, technical & political work to develop technologies, protocols and standards for internet in cars 2nd phase (2008-09): first wave of connected cars from car manufacturers - proprietary operating systems pre-installed in the car information and entertainment systems 3rd phase (2010-2012): sophistication in mobile internet, entertainment and information systems - car manufacturers align with tech companies to develop articulated systems that promote improved communication, & also locative technologies 4th era (2013-14): car manufacturing companies shift towards complementing & designing apps for car owner/passenger mobile phone use & systems (shift
  9. 9. key moments in connected cars 2003: German Ministry of Education research into FleetNET, ad hoc network b/w cars + objects 2006: call for IPv6 to be protocol for internet in automobiles 2008: BMW uses Autonet (dongle in the cigarette lighter) to connect and mobilise their iDrive in-dash internet browser; Autonet adds media storage to become Delphi/Autonet Mobile System; UConnect system emerges from Chrysler, 2009: Toyota Prius consortium develops ng (Next Generation) Connect system (uses 3G); also employs LTE (long term evolution) as wireless hotspot 2010: Ford integrates API system Sync (app technologies like OpenBeak, Pandora & Stitcher); GM uses OnStar (built in car phone service using sensory technology like iRadar & CARbonga) 2011: Ford Sync implemented into 10 European models, move away form embedded technology to enable users to connect their devices; subscription based at US$395+; GM offers MyLink (apps to access Pandora, Stitcher and eventually Facebook, email etc)
  10. 10. • BMW seems to be the leader with a strong connection between the MyBMW app and the iDrive operating system • Sync (Ford and Microsoft) operates both ways - phone to control car and car to control phone apps; Sync (Microsoft) has the lion's share of the manufacturers through Ford and its many brands • Audi Connect is most sophisticated version of both approaches: it provides multiple forms of connectivity, produces a wifi hotspot, integrates information and location services, can integrate social media (manually or automatically) • all of these technologies are rarely included and become part of pre-booked/paid packages to install in the car
  11. 11. Ford Pandora app
  12. 12. Volvo on board information systems
  13. 13. 2 broad approaches 1:car-as-sim/router: installation of a sim card or physical router interfaced through the car’s operating system – effectively converts the car into a mobile internet server, & provides wireless connectivity for the car’s operating system & users within vehicle 2. smartphone-drives-car-connectivity: User smartphone as interface between car & internet - onboard operating system acts as an interface to integrates mobile applications of the phone into the operating systems of the car; apps are either stand alone (broad info, social media, games apps) or integrated (apps related to/gathering info on vehicle)
  14. 14. Policy actors in connected cars
  15. 15. Mapping policy actors in cars + mobiles 3.0 using IAMCR Mapping Global Media Policy project database visualisations -
  16. 16. ICT in Creative Arts, Business and Science, Mitchell et al. 2003 Invention: “Manufacturers” Application: “Consumers” Leadbeater, 2008 Innovation Policy Moment
  17. 17. The Australian Policy Push OECD Research on Road Transport and Intermodal Linkages (RTR) Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS)
  18. 18. autonomous automobility • impact of global financial crisis has seen many automobile manufacturing behemoths rethink their global approach to production & distribution of general purpose vehicles • number of automobiles manufactured globally in the past ten years has maintained a steady increase – consumers in new urban centres in majority world/global south • goodbye (post) Fordism (US, Japan, UK, Germany, Australia) - hello shift to production in ‘emerging’ economies (Indonesia, Malaysia, Hungary, Russia, China)
  19. 19. new imaginaries of automobility • cultural shift towards more environmentally friendly automobiles • consumers are also focusing on vehicles that enhance connectivity to continue their digital, social, mobile, locative media activities • along with increase of information and communication technologies within vehicular information systems is push for increased driver safety tech • increased technological advancements of in-car instruments and operating systems alongside connected infrastructure which enables cars to gossip to each other and to their environments.
  20. 20. ‘THINKING BEYOND THE CAR What you are looking at here is not a 'car'. For us, this is what comes after the car. Just as the internal combustion engine enabled the car to replace the carriage, we believe autonomous technology will enable us to replace the car, and in doing so create a new class of mobility known as 'Level 4'.’ Zoox, Melbourne-based autonomous car company,
  21. 21. materialities of new automobility • tension b/w manufacturers + governments and the co- relation between automobile manufacturing development and increased infrastructure • cars must remain affordable for consumers, manufactures have lead time of 5-7 years to test and implement new technologies • local councils cannot afford to upgrade existing road infrastructures to accommodate experimental transportation systems that may not work/be sustainable for large numbers of people • autonomous vehicles being protoyped (e.g. Google Driverless cars), with great promises (e.g. allowing Blind to drive), but accompanied by many concerns/anxieties
  22. 22. Driving – which exclusions/exchanges? • new forms of mobile media – especially mobile, social, locative media & mobile Internet – playing crucial role in development & design of connected, assisted & autonomous cars • what ultimately will be their infrastructures & affordances? What will be the values they encode & support? Who participates in design of these complex systems? What are the social imaginaries – esp. visions of inclusion & exchange – that accompany & shape cars + mobiles 3.0?
  23. 23. References Gerard Goggin. ‘Driving the Internet: Mobile Internets, Cars, and the Social’. Future Internet 4.1 (2012): 306-321 Gerard Goggin, Tim Dwyer, Fiona Martin. ‘Moveable Media: Mobile Internet and New Policy Modes,’ in Creativity, Innovation and Interaction: Public Media Management Fit for the 21st Century, Michał Głowacki & Lizzie Jackson (eds) (Routledge, 2013) Gerard. Goggin, ‘Mobile Communication Law and Regulation.’ In International Encyclopedia of Digital Communication and Society, ed. Ang Peng Hwa and Robin Mansell (Wiley-Blackwell, 2014) Gerard Goggin & Larissa Hjorth, eds Routledge Companion to Mobile Media (2014) Jessop, Glenn. ‘A Brief History of Mobile Telephony: The Story of Phones and Cars’ Southern Review: Communication, Politics & Culture, Vol. 38, No. 3, (2006): 43-60 Rowan Wilken & Gerard Goggin, ed. Locative Media (Routledge, 2014) 25