Watching television in the car is just around the corner
Wonderful thing, the Highway Code. We've just read this gem in it:
Do not treat speed limits as a target. It is often not appropriate or safe to drive at the maximum speed limit.
It's saying that the majority of the time, driving at the speed limit is dangerous. If it's often not safe to drive at the speed limit, shouldn't they be lower? In fact we would argue for more drivers, particularly those over 70-years-old or driving a Citroen Picasso, to treat speed limits as a target, thank you.
And what does the Highway Code have to say about sat nav?
Do not be distracted by maps or screen-based information (such as navigation or vehicle management systems) while driving or riding. If necessary find a safe place to stop.
Again, you can't look in two directions at once (well, most of us can't) meaning sat-nav obviously is a distraction if you use it. So what, we wonder, will the baffling logic of every teenager's least favourite book have to say about in-car television, on the way in 2009?
The Register reports that the Texan company Microtune has launched a new chip for in-car reception of DVB-T, the digital broadcasting standard that provides Freeview television and radio channels. At the moment, the plan is for tuners containing the chip to be fitted in vehicles in Japan and across Asia; a US launch is thought less likely because of their preference for DVD players. No word yet on a manufacturer taking up the product for the UK market.
Why don't we already have in-car goggleboxes? Because grabbing hold of a tv signal while travelling at speed is quite tricky beyond about 40mph (so ideal for most Picasso drivers). Multiple tuners and several aerials are required (not the most attractive optional extra on a car) and even then it's not very impressive. With these new chips, the aerials are concealed within the windows of the car, feeding multiple chips capable of integrating their signals to produce stable, clear pictures at speeds of up to 200 km/hour (125 miles/hour).
Not that I was driving that fast while watching Jeremy Kyle, your honour.