Despite the fact that mobile devices running the Android OS, there are quite a long time, the penetration in other areas does not happen as fast as we would have liked. Perhaps the most conservative in this respect can be called the automotive electronics market, which still reigns increasingly outdated analog technology. However, innovations gradually come and go. One of these “innovations” can be considered computerization of multimedia systems, can significantly extend the opportunities Unit, gradually turns into a real universal processors.
Let’s see what can benefit from the integration of car audio equipment, operating under OS Android. Naturally, we do not test the sound section and compare the output of the amplifier – it is a set of specialized publications, but the functionality provided through the introduction of a computer component, in contrast, is very interesting.
Parrot Asteroid Smart
Design of the front panel of the device can be called traditional: a rectangular body with slightly rounded corners, large display, on the edge of which housed five sensory control buttons – in general, nothing unusual. Anti-theft detachable panel provides little to the left of the screen – it is there is a button on the device. Of course, this is not a panacea, but at least something – the main unit with the display is not removed. By the way, the manufacturer decided to save space – a slot for SD memory cards is just under an access panel that is held in place by magnets. Frankly, not the best solution – change map frankly uncomfortable.
All ports and connectors have traditionally focused on the back end – there are jacks for video / audio input and output, supporting the rear camera, ISO-connector, three USB connectors and one that supports the function of the charge smartphone with currents up to 2 A. Hardware Installation does not cause any problems, especially in the kit included needed for this set of cables.
Display size model is 6.2 inches with a resolution of 800×480 pixels. Matrix is powered by technology TFT-IPS, capacitive sensors, it supports up to five simultaneous touches. Sensitivity is not bad, and the viewing angles are quite good, both horizontally and vertically. By the same brightness no comments, unless it is not like the lack of automatic adjustment. The display is glossy, glare and it’s pretty hard, especially when struck by sunlight – filter design is not provided.
The heart of the machine is the processor Texas Instruments OMAP3630 – ARMv7 Cortex A8 processor with a clock frequency of 0.8 GHz, while the graphics accelerator is used as popular a couple of years ago, PowerVR SGX530. The amount of RAM is 512 MB type DDR3, and for storing information used built-in storage capacity of 8 GB. As mentioned above, there is a connector for SD, provides for “hot-swapping”. It supports memory cards up to 128 GB.
If you look at the specifications, it becomes obvious that they are very far from that offer modern Android-based device. On the one hand, this is understandable – the manufacturer does not want to increase the cost of the already not a cheap device, on the other – the price of modern chipsets being developed in China, is quite small.
The head unit is running an operating system Android 2.3, optimized for use in the car. In particular, the added features such as support of Bluetooth-headset, voice input and joystick steering column-mounted audio controls. Interestingly, this model does not have the ability to use Google Play – instead offered its own application store Asteroid Market. Accordingly, about any variety of choice, however. Nevertheless, the ability to install third-party applications have just for this purpose will have to use a memory card.
Naturally, the model supports GPS-navigation – for a route is a popular program iGo Primo.
NewsMy Carpad NU3001
It’s a pretty nice device having a small size, we made a little-known Chinese company, which is not surprising – the development of electronics in China are now engaged in by many.
Comes in a model of a rather large cardboard box in which you can find the very head unit, Android-top box, as well as a lot of cables, remote GPS-antenna and, of course, assembly instructions it all together.
In fact, the device consists of two independent units – the actual car and minicomputer running Android 4.4.2. The latter has a very small footprint, so you can easily install it in the glove compartment, and if necessary to remove and carry away. Plastic body, rounded corners, good workmanship, only the selected manufacturer is not the best material – plastic, and sometimes quite subtle.
Display a seven-inch head unit, its resolution is 1024×600 pixels. Capacitive sensor, it supports up to five simultaneous touches. Its sensitivity is not bad, although it is far from ideal. Type of matrix – TFT, respectively, the viewing angles are not perfect. Alas, even a small deviation image is distorted. But, and brightness, contrast and rose to the occasion, so in terms of readability of the screen is quite good.
As the processor uses the popular (especially Chinese manufacturers) Rockchip RK3188 – quad decision ARM Cortex A9 processor with a clock speed of 1.6 GHz. RAM – 1 GB, this volume is enough for any task. Good performance, gaming applications go to “hurray”, but the stability of the firmware is still poor. Thus, during the testing machine a couple of times and hung overloaded – obviously buggy firmware. As for the shell Android – this time in front of us absolutely clean KitKat, so what it came up with the developers from Google. On the one hand, this is good, because it is not overloaded with third-party launcher and programs, and installing applications no problem. On the other – after all, this device is intended for use in the car, so the extra features it would not hurt.
Wireless interfaces are Bluetooth and Wi-Fi 802.11 b / g / n, built-in 3G-module no. Nevertheless, it is possible to connect an external unit via an interface USB.
This versatile receiver is made in the bar form factor. Shielded metal case, the mass of the mechanical controls, in general, at first glance, the device does not differ from their counterparts who do not have their own operating system.
Options pretty good – in the box we found the very head unit, external USB-modem with support for 3G and LTE, again an external Wi-Fi module, license card Navitel 8, a set of cables required to connect to the car, external microphone, positioning elements, user manual, and of course the warranty card.
Plastic front panel is made permanent. The main controls are located on the left of the display. This key eject multifunction knob and two buttons for the navigation system and switch interfaces.
Display size NaviPilot DROID2 is 6.2 inches with a resolution of 800×480 pixels. Naturally, the sensor is made of capacitive technology, so that the sensitivity of the claims does not occur, the display is easy to use and safe. Viewing angles are good, although far from ideal – TFT-matrix is simply unable to provide the immutability of color with a strong rejection of the screen from the user. In addition, protection from bumps and scratches are practically no – the top part of the display is made of plastic.
Performance of the device due to the use of a dual-core 1.2-GHz processor pretty well. Interface OS Android 4.1.1 literally flies, nothing retarding. With games, too, everything is in order, at least two-dimensional. With 3D-intensive applications the situation is slightly worse – some may opt to run due to the fact that the model is not in the list of supported devices.
Now a few words about the wireless interfaces. In fact, the very head unit integrates a Bluetooth, all the rest is realized through additional modules that are connected via USB. In principle, such a concept within the automotive equipment is good, because the external devices can be placed in locations where nothing will interfere with the passage of radio waves. And as new wireless standards plug-ins can be easily replaced. In this case, support for LTE is implemented through the USB-modem “MegaFon”, the SIM-card is also included in the package. There is also a special utility that allows you to find balance and traffic.
In general, despite the somewhat outdated and stuffing is not the best performance, the machine can truly be called a pretty interesting. Although for the money, even now the market is much more attractive offers.
Megabox 62,131 Android OS
The design of this head unit, made in the form factor of 2 DIN, can be called a classic – at least at first glance, this device does not differ from many colleagues. Supplied as usual – it includes the device needed for installation of cables, external antenna GPS, wire for connection IPod and IPhone, external microphone for hands-free and voice control, 4GB SD card preloaded with navigation system and, of course, more instruction manual.
The front panel is literally teeming with all sorts of buttons and knobs placed on both sides of the screen. This is useful, especially for those who are used to the classic management – you can quickly find a suitable station, switch to navigation or, conversely, to return to the menu, touch Android. Liked and build quality – despite traced Chinese roots, to find fault here is not particularly need it.
Display size Megabox 62,131 Android OS is 6.2 inches, resolution – 800×480 pixels. The sensor is made of capacitive technology, so that the sensitivity to any claims do not arise, the display is quite convenient to use. Viewing angles are also pleased – even at high inclinations machine image is not inverted. But frankly annoying fingerprints – wash them quite problematic. Protection from bumps and scratches are practically no – the top part of the display is made of plastic.
Control program is the Android operating system version 4.1, and any special add-ons from the manufacturer, we have not noticed. But in the list of programs, there is a bunch of icons with inscriptions in native Chinese. I wonder what could it be?
The device works quite quickly, no special brake interface. The heart of the system is a dual-core 1GHz processor MStar786 (Cortex A9), supplemented with 1 GB of RAM and 8 GB of ROM. Naturally, you can use memory cards SDHC. Funny, but in addition to the standard radio tuner and has the ability to receive analog TV – why do it, it is not clear. However, the old Chinese smartphones is also able – in those days it was considered like a very steep.
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So, what do we offer the modern market “advanced”, “Unit”? On the one hand, we tested the model is very functional and, of course, they offer the possibility of much more interesting than the usual “brothers”. On the other – a little unclear why such “advanced” devices facing is not cheap, in most cases, rather “sad iron,” the era that ended a few years ago? Maybe to reduce the cost? It is unlikely, because the new Chinese chipsets and so almost nothing. We can only hope that in the near future the situation will change, and the market will come new devices that do not yield to the latest smartphones and tablets.
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