Pioneer Electronics at CES 2018 announced that it's got a couple entries into the new wireless Android Auto world. It's the same Android Auto we've come to know and love, only now without having to plug in. (And that should eliminate one of the major connection headaches enjoyed by many a Pioneer user, especially with the lower end models.)
The new decks are both double-DIN units, as you'd expect give the 7-inch touchscreen, and are AVIC-W8400NEX and AVHW4400NEX. Prices were not disclosed.
While not specifically slaved to the hardware (because software is software), the new units alway will support the upgraded version of Google Assistant on Android Auto, which adds increased functionality on the back end, Google says.
PROTOTYPE PIONEER IN-DASH MULTIMEDIA RECEIVERS SHOWCASE ANDROID AUTO WIRELESS AND GOOGLE ASSISTANT ON ANDROID AUTO
Pioneer Electronics (USA) Inc. today debuts two prototype in-dash multimedia receivers, future additions to its popular NEX lineup, the double-DIN 7" LCD AVIC-W8400NEX and AVH-W4400NEX. Designed to showcase the future of wireless connectivity and smart home integration, Pioneer and a Google Brand Ambassador are teaming up to demonstrate Android Auto Wireless and Google Assistant, now available on Android Auto™ at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2018.
"Our future NEX multimedia receivers represent our next major implementation of smartphone connectivity," said Ted Cardenas, vice president of Pioneer Electronics (USA) Inc. "Android Auto Wireless provides all the features and functionality of Android Auto with the added convenience and simplicity of a wireless connection. Google Assistant, now on Android Auto, lets drivers keep their hands on the wheel and use voice actions to manage tasks while staying focused on the road."
Android Auto is a simpler way to use the Android® platform in the car. With larger touch targets, a simplified interface, and easy-to-use voice actions, it's designed to minimize distraction with driver safety in mind. Android Auto Wireless eliminates the need for users to consciously plug in and connect, providing the additional convenience of simply leaving their phone in their pocket, bag or wherever they carry their Android device.
Google Assistant lets the user have a conversation with Google to get things done in his or her world. Google Assistant works with more than 1,000 smart devices from more than 150 popular brands, making it easy to control things around the user's house just by voice. Google Assistant meets users where they are, on the phone, at home and now in the car.
In 2015, Pioneer was the first aftermarket manufacturer to integrate Android Auto capability in its in-dash receivers. Pioneer's integration of Android Auto in both the currently available line-up and future products enhance the feature's functionality and improves the overall user experience:
- For greater sound quality, each unit comes with a microphone that makes it easier to pick up the commands of the driver or passenger and all answers are pumped out of the car speakers.
- In addition to saying "Hey Google" out loud, users also have the option to access Hey Google three more ways, hitting the hard home key of the unit, tapping on the microphone of the Android Auto user interface, or tapping on the voice assistance via the steering wheel controls.
- Advanced sound reproduction options to enhance listening experience:
- Built-in Auto EQ and Auto Time Alignment provide customized audio adjustments for the driver2 Multi-band Graphic Equalizer with touch panel swipe setting and built-in high/low pass crossover with expanded adjustable crossover points and slopes
- Advanced Sound Retriever®
- 7-inch LCD touchscreens makes accessing and controlling Android Auto icons simpler, and maps and navigation is easier to view
For more information on Pioneer's current line of Android Auto capable models please visit https://www.pioneerelectronics.com/PUSA/Car/NEX.