Chrysler In-Car Wi-Fi: A Born Loser?

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago
chrysler in car wi fi a born loser

Many of our Best and Brightest questioned Chrysler’s decision to offer Wi-Fi (for passengers) in its vehicles (a.k.a. Autonet). They balked at the stiff cost for same: $499 to install, $29 a month. Tech toy site Gizmodo asked one of its savvy readers to test out ChryCo’s car o’ the future gizmo on their behalf, and the early review is not good. It didn’t work out of the box, it’s slow, there’s a one gig cap and it’s not encrypted. Yup, you heard right: no security. “So average guy never sets up encryption (nothing in the manual telling you need to). He plugs it in and parks in front of his apartment with 200 neighbors. Some kids finds it and downloads the full season of The Office. Customer gets a $800 bill. Nice.” As in not nice at all, on any level. How long before ChryCo “rectifies these issues?” We’re still waiting for that revised Avenger…

Join the conversation
4 of 18 comments
  • Psarhjinian Psarhjinian on Sep 14, 2008

    Not a bad idea, but it has the same problem that in-dash navigation has: it's wickedly expensive for what it does, especially next to commodity equipment. There are a lot of cellular-to-wifi routers available, the most common of which is the internet connection sharing function built into every modern operating system: one 3G LAN adapter and thirty seconds of configuration work and you're done. And there are hardware solutions, too, for those who don't want to get their hands dirty. I tested--two years ago--four-port switch equipped with a wifi radio and EVDO card. First thing I did? Plug it into a $20 inverter and put it in my car. Other than Bell Canada's awful data charges, it worked quite well--about as well as the miserable latency cellular networks allow. Chrysler's trying, but this is just window dressing, much like MyGIG (iPod, anyone?) or ChillZone (does anyone use this?). It makes for a comparison sheet bullet (ie, Ford and GM do not have MyGIG, ChillZone or AutoNet) but it doesn't address the fundamental crappiness of the average Chrysler.

  • Accs Accs on Sep 14, 2008

    Hmmmmm Look... The glaring problem here is.... It doesnt matter about the wireless incar internet service. I mean honestly.. how many minivan customers are going to buy this.. ontop of a better than base model vehicle?! What Chrysler needs to do... IS SCRAP THIS IN-CAR B.S stuff. And concentrate on building better cars, with better fuel economy, A LOT LESS OVERLAP... and start concentrating on the CAMRY AND ACCORD!!! Buy a coupla both, and tear them down! Go over the hundreds of thousands of hours and supplier hours.. that made Honda build a vehicle as good as the Accord.. and or Camry. Oh yeah...! What the hell happened to a leading, forefront of a minivan.. that debuted in 97?! What the hell is the crap that is being sold now?! Can you say... ALSO RAN! No matter how much lipstick ya stick on a pig... its still a PIG

  • BuzzDog BuzzDog on Sep 14, 2008

    Right on, Accords...this reminds me of several years ago, when Ford showed a minivan with a small washer-dryer combination in the cargo area. I guess it was targeted to soccer Moms who could multitask while running the kids around. What the...???

  • Accs Accs on Sep 14, 2008

    Hmmm Yeah, I remember the vehicle being a Ford Windstar for 2001. It used a specially designed washer-dryer unit. Its a standard water saving front loader.., but more compact. I doubt anyone thought of a use for such an expensive option, or bought it. All I have to say is... Where is the Windstar now... Gone with the Wind. And that option... Gone like the bad gas that born it.. Just like this Chrysler crap. Just what we need.. in car internet. See, My point is if the vehicle is good... ya dont need the extra b.s options. Its like PIMP MY RIDE... by the automaker.. ONLY LAMER!