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The 3 most common challenges each automotive UX Designer faces daily

Working on car user interfaces is one of the most fascinating and at the meantime, challenging jobs ever. You must be creative, flexible, “agile”, have a “hands-on” mentality and much more of these soft skills which sound so cool… It is actually cool and you do work on innovative products which really can make peoples lives easier. Anyways, when you talk to a typical UX/UI Designer, who mainly works on web- and app interfaces, the first question you always hear is when the automotive OEMs will finally come up with the latest UI trends and update their visuals faster. That’s why I’ll just cut through 3 common challenges an automotive UI Designer has to deal with everyday and I think this will be at least a big part of the answer to this question.

1. Function complexity

There are more than a hundred separate control units in a car which are almost independent computers which send to each other thousands of signals each second and which send even more information to the head unit and instrument cluster of the car. You, as a UI/UX Designer, have to handle all the different functions with their respective signals of information, and find a meaningful way to display those to the driver and make sure the driver understands each important detail + avoid information overload. So, imagine a functional engineer working on a function who comes to you everyday with some new information he found out which you have to deal with while creating your UX concept. Have fun.

2. Hardware-related limitations

Just citing… “The display doesn’t support so much frames in a second, so we can implement this smooth animation” , ” The display port has only one signal interface for videos”, and so on…

3. International norms and regulations

Especially in terms of automated driving, the international regulations are getting more and more detailed with a special focuse on the human-machine interface which can drive your technical ability to make the craziest animations from 100 to 0 during seconds.

Especially in terms of automated driving, the international regulations are getting more and more detailed with a special focuse on the human-machine interface which can drive your technical ability to make the craziest animations from 100 to 0 during seconds.