In November, Toyota announced a partnership with the commercial weather service Weathernews to use data from windscreen wipers to improve the accuracy of forecasts. By mapping the instances of wiper use and comparing it with weather data, Weathernews will be able to better refine its forecasts. It is hoped the initiative will also contribute to improved driver safety by enabling detailed and accurate reports in real-time.
This doesn’t join the pantheon of the Internet of (unnecessary) Things. This is blue sky thinking, and there are two key takeaways:
DATA FOR GOOD. This is a great example of a brand demonstrating tangible consumer (and social) benefits from sharing data. Consumers today – in Asia and around the world, have a tolerant-yet-anxious relationship with sharing their data. 70% of Thais and Indians are willing to share their data for personalised offers, but only 31% Asian consumers trust organizations offering digital services to protect their information. The opportunity here? Businesses that are transparent about the data they collect, while demonstrating clear benefits, will win the trust and affection of consumers. Read more on this in our newly-published Asia Trends for 2020 report here.
PEER POWER (STILL) WORKS. We first called out the trend PEER ARMIES in 2016, capturing the opportunity for brands to involve peer networks, to deliver supercharged customer experiences. Four years on, here’s an innovation driving that theme in a new direction. Toyota and Weathernews are tapping into their driver network and their expertise, while leveraging connected devices to deliver more accurate information. The lesson here? Old trends and battle-tested strategies can still point to new opportunities today. This partnership may very well save lives in the coming months! We are entering a new decade, but don’t be too quick to dismiss ‘old’ concepts.
New: 2020 trend events