General Motors (NYSE:GM) chief executive Dan Akerson says his company is actively engaged in advancing in-car entertainment and navigation systems, which, if done properly, could boost revenue substantially in the coming years.
According to Automotive News, the primary technology GM has been focused on is making Internet-capable vehicles that will allow passengers to stream online video. The first of these models is predicted to appear sometime in 2014, but GM said keeping in-car entertainment up-to-date has been troublesome in the past.
Up-to-date or not, online streaming provides a clear path toward web advertising for GM and its competitors, Ford (NYSE:F) and Toyota (NYSE:TM). Seeing as the average American driver spends four hours each week commuting to work, the advertising potential could be gargantuan.
“For example, what happens if when the logo shows on your screen, it says ‘brought to you by Allstate (NYSE:ALL)’?” asked Akerson. “How many times is that going to pop? And how much can you get from Allstate?”
What makes the prospect of in-car advertising all the more enticing is the progress Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) has made with its driverless cars. If drivers could spend their four-hour weekly commute watching television instead of the road, advertising revenues could go through the roof.