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December 16, 2005 12:03 AM
Broken: Audi owner email
I received an Audi owner e-mail with the following news item, which I found to be incredibly amusing:
They have been called "faux problems" — a term used to describe customer problems that aren't really problems, but are actually part of the car's design. Examples include red lights in the doors that continue flashing (to show the alarm system is armed and operative) and the sound system that automatically adjusts the volume at various speeds to compensate for driving noise.
As an assist for new owners, Audi includes a list of frequently-cited "faux problems" and explanations in the owner welcome kit. This helps reduce unnecessary calls to the dealer and adds to the driving experience. So if you're a new owner and you think you may have a problem with your Audi, check the owner privileges portfolio that came with your welcome kit. It may be not be a problem at all.
I guess Audi has given up on designing these features and instead chalks it up to owner ignorance. I would have expected them to tell me something along the lines of, "Here are some common misunderstandings, and we're working to eliminate them."
Their examples can be addressed with design changes, even just by providing visual or audible feedback to the driver. Sad to see that Audi's approach to design problems is so broken.
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