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Transportation Technology

You Might Rent Features & Options On Cars In the Future 437

cartechboy writes "These days, you go to a car dealership and you buy a car. If you want seat heaters, you might need to option for the cold weather package from the factory. Want the high-end stereo? You'll be likely be opting for some technology package which bundles in navigation. While some options are a la carte, most are bundled, and even when they are a la carte, they aren't cheap. What if in the future you could buy a car and unlock options later? Say the car came from the factory with heated seats, but you didn't pay for them. But later on, say in the middle of the freezing winter, you suddenly want them. What if you could simply pay a monthly fee during the winter months to have those heated seats work? Whether this model would benefit the consumer, the automakers, or both is yet to be seen. But automakers such as MINI are already talking about this type of a future. Is this the right road to be headed down, or are consumers going to just get screwed in the long run?"
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You Might Rent Features & Options On Cars In the Future

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  • by icebike ( 68054 ) on Tuesday January 21, 2014 @07:58PM (#46030931)

    Yes, stupid Idea. Since I own the car, I own everything in the car, including anything I have to hack to make it work.

    I doubt there is legal precedent for this in the consumer market that would survive in court these days, unless they hung
    it on DMCA lockouts of some kind.

    There is legal precedent in the computer industry:

    My university owned a Control Data 3200 computer back in the day.
    They wanted to upgrade it to the next model up, which was a lot faster. They paid a huge price.
    The technician from CDC walked in, yanked 8 cards out of the back and restarted it. It was instantly faster.

    The card were delay lines. Physical devices that slowed down data movement at key places.
    The Data Center director exploded on the spot! The University threatened legal action.
    CDC pointed to contract terms, and the University decided not to peruse it. Computer
    was replaces with IBM gear shortly there after.

Trap full -- please empty.