A Study of Cultural Influence in Automotive HMI: Measuring Correlation between Culture and HMI Usability

Paper #:
  • 2014-01-0263

Published:
  • 2014-04-01
DOI:
  • 10.4271/2014-01-0263
Citation:
Khan, T. and Williams, M., "A Study of Cultural Influence in Automotive HMI: Measuring Correlation between Culture and HMI Usability," SAE Int. J. Passeng. Cars – Electron. Electr. Syst. 7(2):430-439, 2014, https://doi.org/10.4271/2014-01-0263.
Pages:
10
Abstract:
This paper describes a comparative study aimed at identifying cultural differences in automotive-HMI usability. This was part of a larger research to investigate in depth the problems users experience with vehicle-HMI in emerging-regions and help in the development of HMI design guidelines to include cultural consideration. Culture is recognised as a significant influence on user behaviour, as it correlates with certain preferences and abilities. A system may be fully usable for one group of users and environmental conditions but totally unsuitable for another. Even if a conscientious engineer designs a proper human-machine-interface for use in a given environment, the designer is often unable to foresee effects of a different culture on vehicle's HMI usability. Culture has different patterns of social behaviour and interaction which have led many researchers to develop cultural-models to describe these differences. With these in mind, current focus of this study seeks to address three interrelated questions, 1) Are there elements within automotive-HMI that can be identified as culturally specific? 2) Does culture influences user usability performances and how or if cultural-model can be applied to explain the findings? 3) How cultural-model can assist in understanding cross-cultural differences in automotive-HMI usability. This study is based on Hofstede cultural-model. The research assessed their application in cross-cultural differences and applicability in automotive-HMI. To identify cultural sensitive design elements for usability and universal access, systematic usability experimentation was performed in a vehicle-HMI-system. The result showed different cultural groups have different behavioural tendencies and performances while using HMI in a vehicle.
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