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Volkswagen Publishes iPad Customer Magazine

Here’s the first automaker to develop a magazine app.

by on May.28, 2010

"Our goal is to transmit the fascination of the brand and its products in a new digital dimension, creating a global experience."

Volkswagen is the first automaker to develop a digital customer magazine as an app for the Apple iPad. The “innovative” digital product – dubbed DAS for Digital Automotive Space – is appearing as the launch of the new Apple tablet computer proceeds across Europe.

It is just the latest example of the integration of automotive marketing into the computerized world, which is increasingly dominated by mobile devices.

Such devices represent a “distracted driving” safety threat, according to critics. In the U.S., it is estimated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that almost 6,000 deaths occur each year and nearly 500,000 people are injured from the growing use of electronic devices in automobiles. The Secretary General of the United Nations, Ban Ki Moon, recently called for a global initiative to end distracted driving.

Portugal already bans all cell phone use while driving, including hands-free. Thirty-two other nations, like 25 U.S. states and the District of Columbia, have anti-texting laws or handheld phone bans.

In the case of the VW app, it is up to the user to behave responsibly, of course. However, all automakers appear to be oblivious to the threat posed by the electronic devices and their in car screens that are increasingly being adding to vehicles.

In the initial edition, five chapters tell stories from the Volkswagen world.

“DAS is an important building block in Volkswagen’s digital marketing strategy and gives us the opportunity for an interactive dialog with our customers, ” said Luca de Meo, the head of marketing at the Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand.

“Our goal is to transmit the fascination of the brand and its products in a new digital dimension, creating a global experience,” he concluded.

In the initial edition, five chapters tell stories from the Volkswagen world, with 360° images to give the user a realistic impression of technical features on the Volkswagen Touareg such as “Area View,” as just one example.

In addition, an internet version of DAS will be published at the end of June.

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