May 31, 2018
Claire LarsonStaff Writer
If you’re like the average driver, you might own a vehicle that’s more than a decade old and has seen a lot of miles. But you don’t need to get a new car to get new-car tech.
From audio and remote starters to safety features like backup cameras and Bluetooth connectivity, Best Buy has all the latest tech for your car. We have experts who can help you figure out what you need and inspire you to think about what you want. And most stores have certified Autotech experts and special garages to make sure it all gets installed correctly.
To learn more, we sat down with Jay Pidlaoan, a Geek Squad Advanced Autotech in San Antonio, Texas.
He loves cars and has worked on hundreds of them during his 17 years at Best Buy. He gets revved up to help people see all the potential upgrades for their vehicles.
What kind of tech are people looking for?
Customers love smart technology like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, which make your driving experience more connected by seamlessly integrating smartphone features into the radio. For example, you can say, “Hey Google, take me to the nearest pizza place,” or “Hey Siri, call my mom,” and have instant, hands-free assistance.
Safety and security features like backup cameras and remote starters are also very common, especially in older cars. Customers with newer cars that already have a lot of this tech like to add custom touches like new speakers and amplifiers to make their cars unique and special.
So I don’t need a new car to add cool tech?
There’s really no age limitation on a car, as long as it has a 12-volt battery system (which most cars do). The bulk of the cars we work on are from the 80s, 90s and early 2000s.
What’s the oldest car you’ve work on?
I installed standard audio consisting of a radio and speakers in a classic 1951 Chevy pickup.
What’s the first step if I want to add new tech to my car?
Many Best Buy locations have connected car departments with associates who can get you started in the store. All we need is the make, model and year of your vehicle, and we can talk through your needs and help find the best tech fit. From there, we’ll create a custom service proposal and schedule an appointment to do the work.
How long do I have to wait for tech installation?
It varies from project to project, but many installations can be done same-day. We have estimated time frames for everything we do, so you’ll know ahead of time how long everything will take. And if you can’t pick it up that day, we’ll be flexible and work with your schedule.
What’s your favorite part about your job?
My favorite part about this job is the people — getting to know my clients and solve their tech needs. It’s also fun to watch my fellow Autotechs raise the bar by completing a seemingly impossible install or expanding their Mobile Electronics Certified Professional (MECP) certification to the next level. There’s always something new to learn or a new horizon to break in this industry.
We’ll take care of your installation, even if you bought your products somewhere else. Our Autotechs are Mobile Electronics Certified Professionals, plus you’ll get a lifetime workmanship guarantee. Click here to learn more.