Mini’s new equivalent of the Microsoft paperclip is a dog called Spike
It looks like you’re trying to adjust the climate control. Would you like help?
Meet Spike. Spike is Mini’s new intelligent personal assistant (read guide dog for your touchscreen) who will be showcased for the first time on the Aceman concept at the Shanghai Auto Show next week. Woof!
Mini says that Spike will help you learn about the operating system of its future cars, although it sounds like he’ll be something of a digital scamp with ‘unexpected experiences and exciting encounters’ in the pipeline too. Which might explain image number three in the gallery above. Thankfully we don't expect any number twos...
Based on an English Bulldog, Spike will be housed in the central screen and driver display, and with ‘Spike mode’ engaged you’ll soon figure out how to adjust the climate control and change the radio station in your brand new Mini. And yes, this does seem like a solution to a problem that doesn't need to exist.
“Mini will always be synonymous with emotions and remarkable experiences,” explains design boss Oliver Heilmer. “That’s why we are now taking Spike into the future as a digital character. And he is not just a design experiment – he is becoming a characterful companion for the user experience.”
Quick reminder: there’s a new Mini hatch coming next year under the umbrella name Mini Cooper, available in three-door, five-door and cabriolet variants as well as with electric and combustion powertrains. And now with a canine companion too!
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