Gartner analyst Thilo Koslowski said Wednesday that access to data will become a must-have feature for car owners in the next six years. In the premium segment it will be a requirement even sooner, he said.
"Consumers will want access to in-vehicle data by 2016," Koslowski told the Telematics Update conference in Munich. "Premium vehicle owners will expect the features to be available by 2013."
The Gartner analyst reminded his audience that he had forecast that the car would become "the ultimate mobile device." He added that, in his view, this would happen in the next 10 years, but cautioned that expectations need to be "realistic."
Koslowski predicted further explosive growth for personal-navigation devices. "They will be everywhere, including in the vehicle," he said.
The introduction of electric vehicles will speed up the development of information and communication technology in cars," the Gartner analyst predicted. But he warned that this process will take a while because electric vehicles won't become big players in the market for many years.
Koslowski predicted that a range of innovators from outside the car industry would appear in the market in coming years. He particularly noted search engine company Google, which has been testing a driver-less vehicle in California.
Said Koslowski: "I think a lot of consumers would like to buy an automated car which was made by Google."
The Gartner analyst addressed the conference through a live remote hookup from southern California.