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2019 Acura RDX: Poorly Implemented Touch-Pad Lowers UX Rating, Finds Strategy Analytics

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BOSTON February 4, 2019; A new user experience evaluation from the In-vehicle UX (IVX) group at Strategy Analytics has assessed the 2019 Acura RDX. The clean visual design and relatively clear flows for most top tasks are almost completely negated by the use of a poorly implemented touch-sensitive finger pad as the primary control. Although certain touchpad functions can add tremendous value among specific regions and segments, the RDX touchpad proves that not all novel HMI modalities can be “dragged and dropped” into the car without consequences to the UX.

Key report findings include:

  • The touchpad as the primary method of interacting with a console-based infotainment system is an extremely poor design choice and increases the difficulty of all on-board tasks to varying degrees.
  • The RDX splits out all media sources on the home screen, rather than grouping all media sources together under one menu option. Although this does optimize for one-touch access to specific audio sources, this results in a cluttered home screen with too many icons.
  • To its benefit, the RDX does provide limited customization options for the console screen. However, discoverability for some customization options is poor.

Derek Viita, Senior Analyst and report author commented, “The most problematic issues in the 2019 Acura RDX all relate to the touchpad as the primary manual interaction mode for the console infotainment system. In order for such HMI to truly mitigate driver distraction, the control and displays must be implemented in a way that makes sense from an ergonomic and human factors perspective.”

Added Chris Schreiner, Director, Syndicated Research UXIP, “For the Acura RDX, the layout and subsequent HMI simply doesn’t work. As a consequence, of all the infotainment systems benchmarked by Strategy Analytics, it is rated near the bottom.”

About Strategy Analytics

Strategy Analytics, Inc. provides the competitive edge with advisory services, consulting and actionable market intelligence for emerging technology, mobile and wireless, digital consumer and automotive electronics companies. With offices in North America, Europe and Asia, Strategy Analytics delivers insights for enterprise success.

About In-vehicle UX

Our In-vehicle User Experience (IVX) service investigates UX innovation opportunities in the connected vehicle. By understanding the emerging behaviors, needs, motivations, use cases, pain-points and “must-have” experiences of lead adopters and future target consumers, IVX delivers a roadmap to help you design the optimal experience. IVX forms part of the User Experience Innovation Practice (UXIP) at Strategy Analytics. Through both syndicated and proprietary user-centric research capabilities, UXIP delivers strategic insights and analysis on how to optimize the user experience of new and emerging technologies. Click here for more information.