AOL Autos, one of the Internet’s leading automotive research and news sites, today announced its Technology of the Year (TOY) Award at the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show (CES). The award is designed to give shoppers a clear grasp of which emerging technologies provide a positive or negative impact on the ownership experience and vehicle safety, and separates the truly significant, consumer-beneficial advancements from the hyperbole of “new and better.”
AOL Autos has also assembled a unique judging panel to evaluate technology advances introduced each year and will name the best at the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show.
“AOL Autos is the obvious source to bring together the best and brightest arbiters of automotive and electronic communications hardware into one industry award,” explained David Kiley, editor-in-chief of AOL Autos. “Tapping into the expertise of AOL Autos, Autoblog, Engadget, AOL is positioned to evaluate and ultimately name an annual Technology of the Year winner.”
U.S., European and Asian automakers have all been introducing new and branded technologies in the hopes of drawing buyers to entertainment and connectivity in their vehicles, rather than traditional selling points of quality, horsepower and design. And consumers are responding by making choices, and spending thousands of extra dollars, on the systems they feel will be the most capable.
Throughout 2012, AOL Autos, Autoblog and Engadget will report on each new system and significant upgrade automakers and suppliers release to the public at autos.aol.com/award. Those evaluations will organize critical reviews and news about emerging and changing technologies, and will give readers the most authoritative and user-friendly coverage the industry has to offer.
Diverse Group of Judges Plus Joe Q. Public
The experts from AOL Autos, Autoblog, Engadget, as well as a group of industry experts, will sift through the myriad of new offerings in the following: telematics, connectivity and active-safety. They will determine a group of finalists in those three categories, which be announced in November 2012 at the Los Angeles International Automobile Show.
In addition to AOL’s editors, the panel includes people who have demonstrated a unique understanding of what separates well-executed in-cat technology from bad: Tony Fadell, closely associated with the iPod; author and car-advice expert Lauren “The Car Coach” Fix; and Shelby “The Teen Car Coach” Fix.
Kiley added, “The time has come to offer the public a source of news and ratings on these systems to demystify them, and to hold automakers and their suppliers to a rigorous evaluation process. It is clear to us that these systems are what’s making or breaking the introductions and reputations of new vehicles,” said Kiley. “How well these systems are designed and executed is where consumers are making a lot of their to-buy, or not-to-buy decisions.”
The categories evaluated for TOY will include telematics, connectivity and active safety.
Between the announcement of the category finalists at the 2012 Los Angeles Auto Show and the TOY presentation at the 2013 CES, the public will be invited to vote on the TOY – the top vote getter from the public will carry the weight of one judge on the panel in determining the overall AOL Autos TOY.
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