This Day On The Street
Continue to site
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Why the Google Car Is Hideous and Design Is Incredibly Important

Updated from 9:33 a.m. to include poll information.

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Google (GOOG - Get Report) should be lauded for doing a lot of things -- making search simple, fostering plans like Google Fiber, Project Loon and even helping the smartphone and tablet revolution explode over the past few years. One thing that can be chalked up in the dud column though? Design.

Google co-founder Sergey Brin spoke at the Re/Code conference last night, talking about a myriad of topics, including Google X, contact lenses and social. However, the biggest draw was the unveiling of the driverless car. After seeing the car on video, it shows how important design and aesthetics are, even if the product is a prototype.

After Brin, who was being interviewed by Kara Swisher and Walt Mossberg unveiled the car, there was a short video posted to YouTube demoing the car, showing it off, with people fawning over it like it was the greatest thing since sliced bread. Take a look:

Now wait a minute.

Wait another minute.

After having watched the video and thinking about it, I don't understand how anyone in their right mind could consider that car attractive. Other publications called it "cute," and were marveling over it, much as the majority of the tech press does when a new product is announced. However, when something so hideous is released, fawning over it is the farthest thing from my mind, no matter how cool it may be, and ultimately how useful it will become.

After I saw it unveiled, I went on a Twitter rant, comparing it to something Ford (F - Get Report) or General Motors (GM - Get Report) would lose their lunch over.

This takes nothing away from the technology behind it, or the fact that Google, via its Google X labs, has worked hard to get the technology right, and make it safe to be out on the road. Driverless cars, in some fashion of them, will come to the mainstream over the next decade, I have no doubt about that. Tesla (TSLA - Get Report) CEO Elon Musk has talked about it several times and manufacturers such as Ford, Toyota (TM) and others are already using this to a slight extent, having certain models parallel park themselves. This is coming, whether you want it to or not.

WATCH: More tech videos on TheStreet TV | More videos from Brittany Umar

That doesn't mean the design has to be ugly, though. I don't care if the product is coming tomorrow or ten years from now. When someone sees something for the first time, that image is ingrained in their minds. It's why they say you only get one chance to make a first impression.

You didn't see Apple (AAPL) unveil early, ugly hideous prototypes of the first iPod or iPhone to consumers, especially at a tech conference, and then essentially ask for free market research. The same wasn't done with Tesla's Model S, nor any other aesthetically pleasing product.

Ultimately, someone (likely not Google, given the company's history with hardware) will figure out how to make a driverless car that appeals to both design enthusiasts and  technophiles alike.

Until then, keep it parked in the garage until you get it right.

Do you think the Google driverless car is ugly or is it a work of art? Let me know what you think in the poll.

What do you think of the Google car? in TheStreet's Hangs on LockerDome

--Written by Chris Ciaccia in New York

>Contact by Email.

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Real Money

More than 30 investing pros with skin in the game give you actionable insight and investment ideas.

Product Features:
  • Access to Jim Cramer's daily blog
  • Intraday commentary and news
  • Real-time trading forums
Only $49.95
14-Days Free
14-Days Free
F $14.97 -0.13%
GOOG $643.61 0.70%
GM $32.95 -1.44%
TSLA $220.69 -2.66%
AAPL $112.12 2.39%


Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,084.49 +33.74 0.20%
S&P 500 2,013.43 +15.91 0.80%
NASDAQ 4,830.47 +19.6820 0.41%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs