Subaru up with iPhones

The Weekend Post - Motoring - - Front Page -

SHOW­ROOMS are be­com­ing screen stars at Subaru, with a ded­i­cated TV chan­nel and an army of sales staff equipped with iPhone apps that show­case ve­hi­cle fea­tures.

The spe­cially de­vel­oped apps will play video and an­i­ma­tions to demon­strate me­chan­i­cal pack­ages, safety equip­ment and a host of other de­tails.

The iPhones also will be able to trans­mit and play the apps on the larger for­mat of any nearby Subaru TV screens.

While geeks might ar­gue that the iPhone is about to be up­staged by the just-re­leased and larger iPad, Subaru man­ag­ing di­rec­tor Nick Se­nior said the phones smaller screen is what makes it ideal.

“We like the porta­bil­ity of the iPhone, be­cause you tend to carry your phone ev­ery­where,” Mr Se­nior said. “Within the show­room it gives a sales­per­son the op­por­tu­nity to demon­strate Subaru’s fea­tures, and when the show­room closes it is still with them. How­ever the iPad is one of the things that down the line we can cer­tainly look at.”

Se­nior said the iPhone and Subaru TV ini­tia­tive is part of All 4 the Driver – a larger fo­cus on im­prov­ing the cus­tomer ex­pe­ri­ence.

“For ex­am­ple, we’re in­tro­duc­ing Drive It Your Way, which gives cus­tomers much more flex­i­bil­ity in test driv­ing our cars,” he said.

“Our re­tail­ers will be of­fer­ing spe­cific, mapped drive pro­grams. In some cases, for added con­ve­nience, some re­tail­ers will also be of­fer­ing overnight drives or the op­por­tu­nity to have a car de­liv­ered to a cus­tomers pre­ferred ad­dress.”

An­other ex­am­ple of All 4 the Driver in ac­tion will be the sim­pli­fied, plain English billing that cus­tomers will see when get­ting their car ser­viced.

“We won’t con­fuse with tech­ni­cal terms, code num­bers and jar­gon. The idea is to be as trans­par­ent as pos­si­ble in all our com­mu­ni­ca­tions, both writ­ten and ver­bal.”

Mr Se­nior said about 2000 Subaru Aus­tralia and show­room staff had al­ready at­tended All 4 the Driver train­ing pro­grams.

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