Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Music and Millennials

Spiderman, hat
Staying trendy is key when it comes to movies, entertainment, and technology.

My friends used to talk about going out and picking up the latest album from their favorite artist. There was a time when having a cd collection was something you showed off, with big binders full of discs for your friends to browse through as you drove somewhere. I remember when Outkast's double album, Speakerboxx/The Love Below came out. Even if you weren't a huge fan of hip hop, you bought that cd and made sure everyone could see it. Now? Not so much. Step into your nearest Best Buy and the music section is but a fraction of what it once was 10 years ago. Today, where digital downloads reign supreme, most of us require an auxiliary port in our car so we can listen or stream music from our smartphones and mp3 players.

Well, after reading a LA Times article on the habits of millennials and their declining taste in older movies, I imagine the same has happened with their preference for the ways in which they listen to music while driving.
As Neal Gabler puts it in the article- "Young people, so-called millennials, don't seem to think of movies as art the way so many boomers did. They think of them as fashion, and like fashion, movies have to be new and cool to warrant attention."
He compares the newest Spiderman movie to the one that came out a decade ago with Tobey Maguire, saying that Maguire's version is ancient in comparison (doesn't that make you feel old?)

As far as Toyota goes, they've taken steps to make sure people's spidey senses are still tingling with their cars. We often focus on safety features, but with my generation, convenience and trendiness are key. Starting with the 2012 Corolla, Toyota listened to customer feedback and finally added much needed USB and auxiliary ports to all models of the car, giving drivers music options other than the cd player. Nice! Entune is also starting to become more widely available on most newer Toyota vehicles as well. It combines a bunch of useful applications, such as Bing, iHeart radio, and data services (so you can find restaurants, weather, traffic, and other useful info all on the fly).

I think we're going to see a whole lot more connectivity between cars, drivers, and smartphones in the next year or two. We might not perfect something as crazy as the self driving car that soon, but hands free entertainment options for drivers are going to become a lot more accessible and available. How long do you think it will be before cd players go the way of the 8 track and cassette players, and are no longer featured in cars? 

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