At this exact time last year, Apple announced at the Geneva auto show that more than a dozen automakers would implement its new CarPlay infotainment platform by the end of 2014. As the year wound down, however, most of those automakers chose to walk back those introductions, leaving Apple fans and iPhone owners waiting to buy a new vehicle with CarPlay – and Apple learning to adapt to the sometimes glacial pace of change among OEMs.
We predicted that 2015 would be the year in which we’d finally see automakers deliver Apple CarPlay as well as Google’s Android Auto, which was also promised by year’s end. The 2015 Consumer Electronics Show seems to have proved our prediction, with Audi, Volkswagen, Mercedes-Benz and Hyundai, among others, placing an emphasis on CarPlay and Android Auto being made available this year. Forgive our skepticism, but until these systems start appearing in showrooms, consumers will need to seek out solutions elsewhere.
And that’s where the aftermarket and Pioneer Electronics specifically comes to the rescue. Pioneer is the one company that promised both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto – and delivered. Even better, consumers won’t need to purchase a new vehicle to get either of these new platforms.
“We are proud to be one of the first manufacturers to implement these new smartphone integrations into our line of aftermarket in-dash multimedia receivers, providing consumers with the opportunity to update their existing vehicles with the latest smartphone connectivity service of their choice,” Ted Cardenas, vice president of marketing for Pioneer Electronics said in a statement. “By leveraging the connectivity of the smartphone, we are able to augment and update many of the built-in features with dynamic cloud-based content.”
Having this choice and features is critical for vehicles shared by smartphone consumers using both Apple and Android operating systems, and Pioneer makes the adoption process simple for either OS. Three of the five 2015 models from Pioneer’s Networked Entertainment eXperience (NEX) series of in-dash receivers have both CarPlay and Android Auto capabilities.
The flagship model, AVIC-8100NEX, offers connectivity, customization and a user interface that uses similar touch and motion gestures of the connected device and rivals the best smartphones, and delivers an in-vehicle experience that has been so elusive to automakers in their infotainment system offerings to date. “By design, both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto feature a touch UI that is very similar to their respective smartphones, combined with powerful voice recognition capabilities to deliver intuitive and instantly familiar in-car functionality,” Cardenas told the C3 Report.
Pioneer was first to deliver a dedicated Apple iOS-compatible product, the AppRadio, back in 2011. So the company is no stranger to advanced smartphone integration and platform compatibility. Now on the fourth-generation of AppRadio, Pioneer has dominated the market for Apple OS integration solutions, including the availability of CarPlay on the first generation of NEX units released in 2014. And the company is aiming for similar success among Android users with the second generation of 2015 NEX models
Pioneer’s presence in the mobile electronics aftermarket compliments its position as a Tier 1 supplier to automakers such as Toyota, Scion, Ford and GM. “Pioneer can develop leading edge solutions for the aftermarket, where the consumer is actively seeking the latest technology for their vehicle, while simultaneously measuring consumer demand and technical viability for the OEM vehicle manufacturers,” said Cardenas. “Ultimately this translates into better product development and higher customer satisfaction, both at the aftermarket and OEM level.”
And being first to market with cutting-edge technology such as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
Editor’s note: Pioneer will be demonstrating its dual CarPlay and Android Auto capabilities at the Connected Car Pavilion on March 14, 5015, in Austin, Texas.
Source: Pioneer NEX Systems put CarPlay and Android Auto in your old hatchback – Gizmodo