Moto-media: For those upset by the proliferation of screens in and on motor vehicles, best to look away. This driver was one of five drivers in a motorcycle taxi queue outside of a wholesale fruit and vegetable market in Chongqing around midnight on a weekday night. The other drivers had all gathered around his bike, and were watching a movie before I arrived, reaping the entertainment benefits of a forward-thinking member of their queue.
For “a few hundred kuai” (100 kuai = US $15.90), this motorcycle taxi driver has outfitted his motorcycle with an opposable, touchscreen media player. It sports a speaker and four gigs of built-in memory (expandable using a micro SD card). Its battery lasts “around 4 or 5 hours”, and it may also be run off a cable routed to the bike’s battery (as seen here). The owner uses it “mostly for watching TV shows, like action shows about cops.” When I ask whether he uses it for feature films, he explains his preference for episode-based content is because “when I’m working, I have to be prepared to go [on short notice], and its [unsuitable] to have to keep stopping and starting a long movie… you can get unclear about what is happening.” While we are talking, his fellow drivers are contributing remarks as well – some sincere in expressing their appreciation for his good idea, others cracking jokes about him being “too dangerous” as he tries to drive his motorcycle while watching TV.