Saturday, May 31, 2014
Solar FREAKIN' Roadways! The promo video is catchy. A few days ago we posted about that Indiegogo campaign which aims at cutting greenhouse gases by 75%, by using solar powered panels to cover roadways and parking lots.
Watch the video below showing Mercedes-Benz's new "mbrace2" telematics system. The second generation system is included in their 2014 line of vehicles.
According to Mercedes-Benz, "the system brings together pioneered safety, customized infotainment, vehicle care, in-dash navigation, and personal assistance in a technology suite seamlessly integrated in our automobiles."
Consumer Reports has published a review of the 2014 Honda Accord Hybrid. The car boasts a 50/45 mpg fuel efficiency which was put to the test. According to the review, the Accord doesn't live up to that mark.
Pioneer's latest NEX receivers are satellite radio-ready. Which means you are just a tuner away from enjoying ad-free music on your new car stereo. The SiriusXM Connect Vehicle tuner is what you'd need and it's a sweet addition for music lovers.
Whether you're ready or not, self-driving cars are on their way. One car that gets close to being autonomous is the Mercedes-Benz S550 with its Distronic Plus with Steering Assist technology package. Consumer Reports tried to show what driving one of these is like on a special edition of their 'Talking Tech & Talking Cars' video podcast.
Friday, May 30, 2014
Back at CES 2012, Mercedes showcased DICE or Dynamic and Intuitive Control Experience. The concept shows a futuristic looking car dashboard and windshield which acts as a head-up display (HUD) in its entirety.
Thursday, May 29, 2014
Of all the companies racing to make a self-driving car, Google seems the most likely to do so. The Silicon Valley company recently tested its first autonomous vehicle and put real people in passenger seats. The video below shows what happened.
By AppRadioWorld at 3:09 PM
Tesla's Model S sedan has a large dashboard screen which no other car can boast about so far. But Volvo's 2015 XC90 dashboard will make you do a double take just to make sure it's not a Tesla. The Swedish automaker has released a video of its latest SUV which shows the car's interior.
By AppRadioWorld at 2:27 PM
It's official! Apple has acquired Beats Electronics for a whopping $3 billion. What was originally thought to be a $3.2 billion deal has settled for a few bucks less.
Beats owns more than half the headphone marketshare and has made over $1 billion in sales. Their subscription music service, Beats Music, is also quite popular. So why did Apple choose to purchase Beats?
By AppRadioWorld at 1:52 PM
Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Last week we posted about Solar Roadways, a crowd-funding campaign on Indiegogo that aims at manufacturing ingenious solar panels to be used to make streets. The campaign planned on raising $1 million before the deadline on May 31, 2014.
By AppRadioWorld at 2:18 PM
Every time Apple holds a media event, people scramble to find a live feed to watch it. Apple has historically streamed a few events but not all of them.
June 2, 2014 is the big day when the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC 14) kicks off and Apple has announced that it will live stream the keynote from the event so you can watch it in your cubicle at work or the warmth of your couch at home.
By AppRadioWorld at 12:45 PM
Summer will be upon us before you know it (at least for people in the northern hemisphere). For me at least it means one thing: time to plan a road trip. Even the shortest road trip can hold attractions you may have never heard of or places you couldn't imagine even existed.
Be it a tourist attraction, a breathtaking view, a hole-in-the-wall restaurant, or even a place to crash for the night, Roadtrippers is the answer to bringing all those places together and show you where they are. The trip planning service has a website you can use to start planning your trip and send all that information to an accompanying smartphone app (iOS and Android) to be used while you're on the move.
Monday, May 26, 2014
NOTE: This post has been pasted to the top of this page. Newer posts may be below.
On this Memorial Day, AppRadioWorld remembers our nation's veterans who have sacrificed their lives in service. We also remember their families.
AppRadioWorld will donate half of the advertising fees made from Amazon starting today, May 26, 2014 to May 31, 2014 to the Wounded Warrior Project. Here's where you come in.
All you have to do is shop on Amazon for the next six days by clicking the Amazon banner below or any of the other Amazon banners on our site. It doesn't cost you a penny extra but by doing so, we get a few bucks (usually 4-6% of your purchase) kicked back to us as advertising fees. 50% of the fees we make from 5/26 to 5/31 will be donated to the Wounded Warrior Project.
By AppRadioWorld at 9:00 AM
Saturday, May 24, 2014
Ford has announced base price of its 2015 Mustang and the tech that's included in it. The price jumps about $1,000 over the 2014 model but with the base model all you get is a miniature 4.2-inch dashboard screen for the SYNC infotainment system.
Friday, May 23, 2014
A crowd-funding campaign on Indiegogo is approaching its deadline on May 31, 2014. The project is Solar Roadways which could replace asphalt streets in the future. The futuristic looking concept uses the sun's energy to power environmentally friendly roads which pay for themselves over time.
Solar Roadways is a concept imagined by an Idaho couple, Scott and Julie Brusaw. Here are some more details and how you can contribute.
By AppRadioWorld at 3:37 PM
Thursday, May 22, 2014
I saw this advertisement while watching TV yesterday and it made me curious. The 2014 Acura MDX was shown finding a magical secret path, beating the "beaten path" which is meant to be beaten. The beaten path was gridlocked with traffic and the SUV found its way around it.
Alright, the advertisement is meant to make everything look magical. In real life situations, finding unclogged roads is often as simple as finding kryptonite. But good technology can sometimes show you the path of least resistance. Watch the ad below and see what technology is built into the Acura navigation system.
Wednesday, May 21, 2014
The California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) has approved rules to allow the testing of self-driving cars on public roads. The announcement came yesterday with the new rules going into effect on September 16, 2014.
The DMV had promised back in December 2013 that it would post regulations for public use of self-driving cars. They also held a public hearing in January this year to address concerns.
Tuesday, May 20, 2014
We wrote a short review yesterday about the new app Speedometer by Sygic. You should check out the app if you haven't already. The app is a simple-looking speedometer with a few additional features that aren't robust yet due to limited crowd-sourced data available.
Speedometer isn't AppRadio compatible but I think it should be. If it does add AppRadio Mode compatibility though, this is what it might look like on an AppRadio 3...
About two weeks ago we posted about the latest Google Maps update that added a new lane guidance feature to its iOS and Android versions. Version 3.0.0 for iOS has the feature and it works quite well.
The only downside is that Google Maps is not AppRadio compatible. Gone are the good ol' days when those were the default maps for iOS and in turn on the AppRadio. Ever since Apple introduced their own maps application, things have not been the same.
I used Google Maps recently and was pleasantly surprised when the voice in my car told me to use one of the two lanes on the left to enter the freeway. And I may be sticking exclusively to Google Maps from now on. Here's why...
By AppRadioWorld at 6:06 AM
Stezza is possibly the most beautiful app for playing the stored music in your iPhone. It is also AppRadio Mode compatible. With the exception of one issue that I have been experiencing for a while now, the app is very good. But there may be a fix coming soon with new improvements to the app too.
Navfree GPS is one of the better navigation apps available for AppRadio Mode. The best feature is Google Street View which is absent in most other applications. The app is available in different versions depending on the country you need it for.
Recently the US version of the app (Navfree GPS USA + Street View) was updated to version 2.3.66 with new map data being added to the update (February 2014 map data). But updating the app alone doesn't mean it will continue to work. Here's what you will also need to do to get it working.
The latest version of iOS, version 7.1.1, has been jailbroken by developers winocm and i0n1c. However, the untethered jailbreak isn't ready for primetime just quite yet.
The last known working untethered jailbreak for iOS, evasi0n7, was available for iOS 7.0.X. With iOS 7.1, the jailbreak vulnerability was patched by Apple. But the news of a possible jailbreak for the new version is definitely good for various reasons.
Monday, May 19, 2014
Capacitive touchscreens in cars are far and few between.
Car infotainment systems have featured touchscreens in their dashboards for quite a few years now. What most people may not know is that majority of those screens use (the outdated) resistive touch screen technology.
Resistive touchscreens require users to use appropriate amount of pressure when tapping. As a result, the touch experience may sometimes feel laggy, jerky, or not very streamlined. The interface stutters and doesn't always feel responsive.
By AppRadioWorld at 6:11 AM
CNET has posted a test drive video of a specially designed test model Volvo S60 in Sweden which is a part of the automaker's Drive Me program. The pilot project is in place to develop self-driving cars and further self-parking technology. The technology is still a few years away but progress is definitely being made.
Watch the self-explanatory video for yourself after the break...
By AppRadioWorld at 6:09 AM
Speedometer is an app by Sygic that not only gives you speed information but also does a couple of other things. With a simple looking interface the app is designed mainly to give you speed trap information along your route. This includes red light cameras, police traps and even traffic incidents.
I briefly tried this app yesterday and this is how it works.
By AppRadioWorld at 6:08 AM
The 2014 Chevrolet SS is a rear-wheel drive, 6.2L guzzler with 415 horses under the hood. The V8 sports sedan promises performance and elegance in one package. But the car also features a convenience feature - Self Parking.
The SS can park in two ways. Parallel or Perpendicular depending on the situation. The vehicle can search for a parking space using sensors in the body. Watch these two videos showing the Chevy in action...
After Microsoft acquired Nokia, most of the cellphone-maker's projects were done away with. Just a few branches remained. One of them was HERE Maps, which accounts for less than 10% of the company's revenue.
But after months of slipping slowly into oblivion, HERE Maps may be poised to make a comeback of sorts.
One of the most appealing features of any of the new Tesla vehicles is its gorgeous 17-inch dashboard screen. The car's infotainment system is equipped with a fully functional web browser. Quantcast conducted a study trying to find out what drivers actually browse for in their cars on that large screen.
The results of the study were released recently. Data for a 30-day period from February 24 to March 23 was analyzed and this is what they found.
Sunday, May 18, 2014
Most garage-door openers are a pain to program. The process usually involved pressing multiple buttons for long periods of time and a lot of trial and error.
Audi Motors aims to simplify the programming process and make the garage-door opening and closing experience easier by integrating the technology in its car's dashboard interface. With the HomeLink System in the 2014 Audi S4 sports sedan, you will be able to control your garage door just by tapping a screen.
Remember Automatic Link, the smart driving assistant that helps you track your driving habits? The company that makes that product, Automatic Labs, has teamed up with Jawbone, makers of the UP fitness band to help you get in shape.
With the collaboration, the aim is to give drivers insight into their physical activity and driving patterns and how those two are connected. Here's how it works and how the concept came about.
Another company is going after Apple for some of that green stuff!
American Navigation Systems, Inc (AmNav) has filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Apple concerning the use of GPS on Apple's mobile devices. According to the filing earlier this week, AmNav says the inventors of their acquired patent "conceived a way to display GPS data in real time on a portable mapping device."
Every once in a while I get a user question asking how to check the current firmware version on a Pioneer AppRadio 3. It is very simple to do this but here it is for those who may not know...
Saturday, May 17, 2014
We received a very good response to our AppRadioWorld Photo Contest which we ran over the last two weeks. There were quite a few interesting entries we got. But we were looking for the cleanest, most functional car dashboard setup featuring an AppRadio Mode enabled head unit, a smartphone and a car mount. And the results are in!
We posted the picture above on our Instagram account yesterday, which was sent to us by our winner. So here is the official result. The winner is...
Friday, May 16, 2014
Many of you have been asking about the differences between the various Pioneer NEX receivers. The five NEX receivers were only made available for purchase a few weeks ago with limited information on how each one differs from the other. After all, the price differences between the head units must have a reason or two.
So, after yesterday's CarPlay Media Event from Pioneer, I went through the information provided by them about each head unit and compiled a table with what I could find so far. Check it out after the break (click image for larger, clearer view)...
Thursday, May 15, 2014
If you haven't already, follow AppRadioWorld on Instagram. We will be posting short and quick updates there on Pioneer's NEX head units and CarPlay over the next few weeks.
Our Instagram handle is @AppRadioWorld, same as our Twitter handle. Get an early look at what will appear on our website and all the breaking news via pictures. Click here to follow or any of the buttons below...
By AppRadioWorld at 10:55 PM
Pioneer's NEX receivers are different from one another in small but significant ways. I am still trying to find out what the major differences are, which in-turn will explain why the prices differ so much.
Take the AVIC-5000NEX for example. This receiver is the fourth in line among the NEX receivers and one major difference is the absence of an HDMI port.
So how will the AVIC-5000NEX support the iPhone 5 and above?
By AppRadioWorld at 10:23 PM
Even before Pioneer announced CarPlay capability in its NEX receivers, a car stereo shop out of Florida posted video reviews of these head units on YouTube. Five Star Car Stereo is a car electronics store that serves the Tampa Bay area. Their YouTube videos are informative and fun to watch.
Here's their take on the NEX products...
By AppRadioWorld at 9:47 PM
CarPlay is coming this summer to the car you already own via one of five Pioneer NEX receivers. Pioneer Electronics held an exclusive CarPlay Media Event in San Francisco, CA today and we were there to get the latest news.
Here are the exclusive details and pictures from the event...
By AppRadioWorld at 5:07 PM
Tuesday, May 13, 2014
Note: This post has been pasted to the top of this page. Newer posts may be below.
UPDATE: Must have a shipping address in the United States to win.
It's time for us to give back to our readers. But we are going to make it a little interesting.
We want to see your car dashboard setup featuring an AppRadio Mode enabled Pioneer head unit, a car mount, your smartphone and any extra cables/adapters you use. Share a photo with us and you get a chance to win a goodie bag with a few car accessories. We will also feature all interesting dashboard photos in a post when the contest ends and a winner is announced.
The best, functional, cleanest setup will win. Contest ends on May 15, 2014 at 11:59 p.m. PDT. Winner will be announced subsequently. The rules are simple...
By AppRadioWorld at 5:57 PM
Monday, May 12, 2014
Almost exactly two years ago, we reported on a patent granted to Apple by the US Patent and Trademark Office for a steering wheel remote control. From the patent document illustrations, the remote looked like the dial of an iPod Classic.
At the time, it was the first piece of hardware for your car that Apple had anything to do with. Two years later Apple is all set to make its CarPlay technology a major player in today's vehicles. So will we see a steering wheel remote dedicated to control CarPlay anytime soon?
By AppRadioWorld at 5:55 PM
Sunday, May 11, 2014
This deal won't last long. As of right now, Pioneer's flagship Multimedia DVD receiver from its NEX family is on sale on Amazon for an all-time low price of $575.99. Pioneer's suggested retail price for this product is $700. The deal on Amazon includes free shipping. Sales tax may be added in certain states.
Affiliate link to purchase is here...
There were only 10 items left in stock at the time of this post. If you are looking to upgrade your car stereo and get Apple CarPlay pretty soon (early Summer 2014), this is the lowest priced head unit you can get. Hurry!
By AppRadioWorld at 2:54 AM
Saturday, May 10, 2014
The warnings are everywhere - keep those hands off your cellphone while driving. Law enforcement is cracking down on violators of the cellphone law to keep our roads safe.
One of the safer ways to interact with your smartphone while driving is by using voice commands, which leads to technology like Apple's Siri Eyes Free being integrated by car manufacturers in their vehicles. But if your car doesn't come equipped with a dedicated button to activate Siri, you have options.
What seems like a trend these days is Siri Remotes which either strap on to the steering wheel or hook on to the visor. Here is a list of remotes that may work for you.
By AppRadioWorld at 12:01 PM
Friday, May 9, 2014
The music industry's transition through the digital age continues with the news that Apple is on the verge of acquiring Beats Electronics for $3.2 billion. The headphone-maker also provides the streaming music service, Beats Music, and Apple taking over the company raises the question of what now for their own iTunes Radio?
By AppRadioWorld at 11:37 AM
This week's Google Maps update has a lot of new features and most of them are quite useful. Although offline maps isn't essentially a new feature, the latest update has made saving maps for offline use very easy.
So before you head out onto unknown streets where internet connection may be spotty, take a look at how you can save a map for offline use.
Thursday, May 8, 2014
Google Maps for iOS and Android was updated with major improvements and new features. The app remains one of the most popular navigation apps. Even though the app isn't compatible with AppRadio Mode, people continue to use it more than any other GPS app.
Version 3.0.0 (for iOS; Android version varies by device) has the following new features added for iOS and Android...
Tuesday, May 6, 2014
Google has been testing self-driving cars around its headquarters in Mountain View, California. The technology is advancing at a steady pace with new parameters being added constantly. Google's testing is believed to be the most advanced as far as autonomous cars go.
The Silicon Valley-based tech mogul has posted a YouTube video which gives viewers a small taste of what they've been working on and where the technology stands as of now. Check it out after the page break.
Autonomous or self-driving cars may still seem like something from the future but that future may not be that far off anymore. Google has famously been researching the technology while automakers have also been trying to get their feet wet in it.
Volvo, for example, envisions a world with magnets in the road which will help guide the cars of the near future equipped with magnetic sensors themselves. By creating a railway-like system, cars will be able to stay in their lane.
Sounds far-fetched but the Swedish automaker recently conducted the Volvo research project which included placing magnets about 8 inches below the road's surface.