Bolt-on

Dvdres Driving across California yesterday, my daughter was watching Mary Poppins on an iPad and I couldn't help but notice the iPad is a great entertainment device, but also has touch screen games, music, and more.

I thought about how a lot of cars come with drop-down DVD players bolted into headliners (usually as a costly $1k+ option) and I instantly remembered how people used to have phones bolted into their cars, with numbers that were specific to only reaching someone when they were in that specific car driving, back before we all walked around with our own phones.

Chalk it up to another product disrupted by the mobile device maker.

4 Comments

  • If you have more than one child then one iPad in the car ain’t as convenient, and these days portable DVD players suitable for car travelling are well under $100 so I’ll wait a little longer for this disruption.

  • What Carlos said and the fact that I wouldn’t trust my 3 year old with holding an iPad, and probably not my 5 year old either. Was your daughter holding it or was it propped somehow?
    Plus, I can’t see either watching anything for more than a few minutes and then flipping to something else, which defeats the purpose of having a peace on the drive.
    I still think you’re right, I can see it coming, but I’ll take the bolt on for now ;-)

  • I paid almost $2000 to put a roof mounted DVD player into the minivan back around 1999. When I bought a used Durango last year I picked up a dual screen portable DVD system for $130. We live in amazing times.

  • While Carlos’ comment about having multiple kids is a good one, you can solve this pretty easily by putting it in a snap-on case and stringing the iPad between the two front seats. $20 for the case and about ten minutes. Hopefully there will be a pre-built option for this one day (they exist for portable DVD players). We found that our kids start to get carsick if they stare down in their laps for too long.
    Car trips are exactly the circumstance for which I bought an iPad. The kids can watch movies while we drive, but then once we’re there, we have a lightweight computer for checking email, looking up local info, playing games, etc.. The kids can also play air hockey, checkers, connect 4, and dozens of other games without loosing pieces in the car.
    We were at a swim meet last weekend (which involves A LOT of sitting around and waiting for your heat) and all the kids gathered around the iPad to play games with each other. It was pretty great.

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