Cadillac Admits to Problems With CUE Infotainment

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Cadillac Cue

It seems like the car makers are having a bit of trouble making their infotainment systems actually usable.

Cadillac said it will update its CUE infotainment after admitting to Wired that the system was slow in responding to commands.

Wired called the system “laggy and unresponsive.”

The update should be released later this year through Cadillac dealers.  A CUE design manager told Wired, “We’re hearing about our haptics and the desire for quicker responses.”

The system update will provide more immediate responses to commands and will be available for the Cadillac XTS and ATS.

Source: Wired

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1 Comment

  1. I have always wanted to own a Cadillac. I look at the Cadillac brand as the absolute pinnacle of what the General Motors company is able to manufacture. This is my third vehicle I have leased in the last 5 years, and I have continued to stay with the brand because I find their vehicles to provide that signature “ride” and luxury that one would expect.

    In November of last year, as my 2010 SRX lease was about to expire, I already had my mind set on leasing a 2013 vehicle. I had done my research, and the thing I was more excited about than anything else was this new, revolutionary tech product called CUE. Being a huge gadget freak who needs to be the first to own everything new in tech, I wanted the new SRX solely for that CUE technology. In fact, when I went to the dealership and said I was interested in the 2013 SRX, the dealer talked endlessly about how fantastic the CUE system was. No doubt, dealers had been properly trained to make CUE the main focal point when trying to sell these vehicles.

    I couldn’t believe how fast my level of excitement sank as I plugged in my iPod and found that every time I selected a favorite song, it played another. The way CUE handled playlists was atrocious.

    Then, I was amazed to discover that upon trying to make a phone call, shortly after entering the vehicle, that I kept getting “the device is still attempting to initialize” response from the CUE system.

    Of course, now all of us know that the biggest problems the CUE system faces are all caused by some engineer’s bright idea that none of the information from your phone or iPod should be permanently stored in its database. Every time you enter and leave the vehicle, the CUE system has to reindex itself and re-upload the same information over and over again. This is why you can’t make a phone call in the first 5-10 minutes of your drive. This is why if you have an iPod with thousands upon thousands of songs, it can never upload it all fast enough for you to be able to play the song you want.

    Who looked at this kind of functionality and thought it was workable? Even worse, how the hell did Cadillac green light these systems to be installed in their vehicles?

    Before I get to the meat of this story, I have to give credit to the CUE team. Not only have reps participated on this forum, but I have their direct phone number and have been invited to call them anytime that I have concerns.

    The problem is, as much assurance as we have received that they are looking to fix these issues, I don’t think there has been a clear roadmap of what is going to be fixed in the update due this March (which was originally supposed to be due in January). If you look at the latest press release that GM has issued, you may think that a major fix is on the way — and you would be right. But exactly what is being fixed? I see nothing about iPod incompatibility nor the fact that you can’t make a phone call as soon as you get into the vehicle. I talk to a CUE rep on the phone and I am told that perhaps these problems can’t be fixed without the addition of a hard drive, and another CUE rep talks about flash storage capability. In other words, the stories change pending on who you approach at CUE.

    Still, I give the CUE team a huge amount of kudos. At least they are trying. I can’t seem to say the same for GM Executives….

    I decided to write a letter — an actual typewritten letter that you put a stamp on — to Daniel Akerson (Chief Executive Officer) and Robert Ferguson (GM VP of Cadillac). I questioned how the CUE system, with all its bugs, was ever approved for placement in their company’s flagship line of vehicles. Not an unfair question to ask, given the fact that people who buy a Cadillac expect the very best from the brand. You just don’t throw in some cool-looking dashboard entertainment system without making certain that people who pay good money for a product have to spend their initial months of ownership coming to a forum like this and complaining about how it doesn’t work.

    And you know what? I wasn’t expecting that my letter would actually be read by Mr. Akerson or Mr. Ferguson. But I did expect that I would get some sort of professional, concerned response from the team that stands behind the Cadillac brand.

    Well, the response did come in the form of a phone call. I hate to sit here and insult the people that are hired to deal with consumer complaints at Cadillac, but I felt as if I was dealing with someone who had no right to be in that position. The individual that called me seemed to be the kind of person I would talk to if I were calling the complaint line at my local Target store. I am certain the woman I spoke with was nice, but it was very apparent to me that she was uninformed, and was simply someone who was working in a call center so far beneath the Executive level.

    After pouring out my heart in a letter about being unhappy with the CUE system and that Cadillac should be ashamed for putting it in their flagship brand, the response I got was, “There is nothing we can do for you.” When I asked if my complaint had even reached the Executive level, the response was something like, “Well, your letter did reach the Executive offices.” Really? And they had someone like you contact me to say “There is nothing we can do for you?”

    Actually, after repeatedly voicing my disgust for the response, I was given some sort of compensation on service. It was a nice gesture that I would not have gotten without the objections I raised, but I am afraid the entire experience has left me somewhat “cold.”

    Listen, there may be some of you who think I am making too much of this in light of the fact that the CUE team is trying.

    My continued frustration is that the answers to exactly what has been fixed and what has not, is still not clear. Now three months into the ownership of my SRX, I still can’t make a phone call and I don’t even use my iPod, because I can’t.

    Listen…..perhaps some of you can relate to what I am about to say….

    One of the places I find the most solitude is in my Cadillac. As I drive to and from work, I immensely enjoy the ride beneath me. It is my time to relax, enjoy the drive, make a phone call or two, and enjoy the large collection of music I own on the vehicle’s sound system. The most pleasurable part of my day is often the time I spend in my SRX.

    But you know what? I can’t listen to the music I want because the CUE system can’t properly play music from iPods with large libraries. I can’t make a business call without having to wait 5-10 minutes for the vehicle to initialize. This is not the kind of problems that customers who pay a premium for a vehicle like this should have to deal with. Furthermore, I would hope for more direct answers from the CUE team as to whether these problems will definitely be fixed. Lastly, the one thing you don’t want to hear when you bring the complaint all the way to the top of the GM Executive chain is, “There is nothing we can do for you.”

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