Toyota Plans to Bring Social Networking to the Automotive World
While Facebook and Twitter are, by far, two of the biggest social networking sites on the internet today, there are a countless number popping up every day that are trying to grab some of their user base. And now, with the help of Microsoft and Salesforce.com, Toyota is planning to launch their own social networking site as well. But, this one plans to stand apart from other Facebook wannabes by offering a unique feature that no other site has before: the ability to befriend and interact with your car.
Toyota's new social networking service is called "Toyota Friend," and it was recently demonstrated to a crowd in a Tokyo showroom. During the demonstration, the owner of a plug-in Prius was sent a message from his vehicle, which he had named "Pre-boy." In the message, the owner was instructed to charge Pre-boy overnight. When the owner did as the message said, he received a new message from Pre-boy that read, "The charge will be complete by 2:15 a.m. Is that OK? See you tomorrow."1
It is hard to believe that Toyota is successfully anthropomorphizing vehicles. It seems like only yesterday that KITT, Herbie, and Christine seemed like something we would never see in our lifetime, and now Toyota has taken a huge step toward making it a reality. Although, Pre-boy seems to be much nicer than Christine.
Joking aside, "Toyota Friend" really does have a number of values that are sure to make it a success. For instance, through "Toyota Friend," a car can alert its owner when it is due for an inspection. Not only that though, the vehicle can also link the owner to a dealership to set up an appointment.
And of course, what would a social networking experience be without some sort of true social aspect? That is why "Toyota Friend" users can opt to share their interactions with their vehicle with other owners, or simply keep them private. Users will also be able to share their exchanges with users on Twitter, Facebook, and other social networking sites.
Toyota is currently looking to deploy "Toyota Friend" on electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids in Japan, initially. After that Toyota will be equipping more models in more markets with "Toyota Friend."
For now, you can still makes friends with a new Toyota at Elk Grove Toyota. If you'd like to learn more about models like the Venza and Sequoia, feel free to visit us at 9640 West Stockton Blvd. Elk Grove, CA 95757. And, remember to stay tuned for more news, coming soon, from Toyota!
Source: 1 http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/05/23/toyota-friend-social-network_n_865437.html