When Ford can make whole cars again, they may feature in-car advertising

Ford has developed a novel use of all the cameras their chipless, self-driving cars sitting in parking lots have: scanning the road for billboards and displaying cooperative ads on your car's handy touch screen.


Ford could potentially even work with advertising agencies, or the companies responsible for billboards, so that upcoming advertisements would be provided ahead of time to train the system so it could better recognize what it's seeing, and even provide customized URLs or additional content that loads as a result. You might be driving by a billboard hawking a Whopper, and the passengers in the vehicle could be given the option to watch a Burger King ad. The key words being "given the option," because one day that might not be the case.

Similar to the cheaper version of Amazon's Kindle e-reader that's discounted thanks to ads appearing on the lockscreen, one day your family's sedan might come with a hefty discount if you're willing to endure random ads popping up the dashboard every time you pass a billboard. Or, if you look at it another way, if you want a Kindle without ads, you have to cough up an extra $20, and that could very well one day be the case with cars. If you don't want every passing billboard popping up on your dashboard screen, then maybe you'll have to consider the upgraded "highway peace and quiet" package.