Five lessons from buying, driving, and owning a Tesla car about the future of automobiles and the world. On top of the obvious predictions that all cars will be electric and with self-driving capabilities, I've learned a few more essential lessons on the future of the automobile industry from owning a Tesla car for about a year now.
In this year, I experienced evidence that (1) online shopping will continue to grow and take over new categories such as automobiles, (2) the quality of software products will improve and reach a level of trust in life-threatening usage, (3) the cooperation and collaboration between people and machine (AI) will make people's lives better, (4) identity verification and access control will become more accessible and more secure, and (5) many small steps of many people are vital to fighting climate change. These are not new trends; however, Tesla pushes the limits in these long-term and significant impact trends beyond anything I saw before.
Lesson 1: You can buy a car online
I bought my Tesla model 3 using my mobile phone.
Last year, I relocated to the US and haven't installed an Internet cable service yet. I had a rental car from my company for a few more weeks, and I didn't have too much time to spend in car dealerships. Anyway, I ordered tons of things for the new home from Amazon using its mobile app. Can I also buy a car online?
From my days working in Amazon, I remember the complexity of the vehicle category and the many ideas to get people to buy cars in Amazon, including signing a long-term deal with the "Top Gear" team or creating "Your Garage" section on the website. Nevertheless, with all these investments, cars are not available on Amazon, and the many services trying to sell cars online take only 2%–3% of the market ($36bn out of $1.3tr in 2021).
In less than 5 minutes, I order a Tesla on their website. It was easy and quick. Many people are already researching online, comparing specs, and watching the many Youtube videos on the cars they consider. However, they need to find a near dealer and spend (=waste) many hours until they can place the order for their vehicles. With Tesla, it is simpler and probably saves some of the costs (=cut the middle man).