DICE, Livio debuting in-car internet product


Certainly an emerging category to behold at CES: Already Vision Critical finds that 9% of U.S. drivers streamed audio programs or podcasts on their smartphones through their vehicle’s stereo system. That number is only going to increase with Toyota integrating Clear Channel’s iheartradio mobile app into select 2011 models and Ford integrating Pandora into 2011 cars with its Sync system. Now internet radio manufacturer Livio Radio and DICE Electronics, which specializes in automotive OEM digital media integration, are teaming up to seamlessly take Internet radio on the road—no Bluetooth device or FM transmitter needed.

Livio has developed the Livio Radio Car Internet Radio App which, when installed on smartphones connected to the DICE components, provides subscription-free Internet radio access using factory stereo buttons and integrated audio controls on the steering wheel.

“The fact that CEA reports that over 48% of non-smartphone owners expect to upgrade in 2011, coupled with the current growth of Internet radio suggests our solution has huge potential,” Livio Radio President Massimo Baldini said.  “DICE is the partner who is going to help smartphone users seamlessly enjoy Internet radio in the vehicle while on the road.”

The DICE in-vehicle solution featuring the Livio Radio Car Internet Radio App requires the use of an iPhone or Android device.  The phones’ users control the Livio Radio Car Internet Radio App, offering more than 45,000 AM/FM and Internet-only stations, from the factory-installed car stereo system, including any integrated steering wheel audio controls designed to increase ease of use and safety. 

The item will be at the 2011 International Consumer Electronics show at booth #2806 (Livio Radio) and booth #1212 (DICE Electronics).

RBR-TVBR observation: Livio already has a free app on the iTunes store that’s powered by RadioTime. It was named a Top 20 finalist at the 2010 International Consumer Electronics Show’s Mobile Apps Showdown, however, does not incorporate the existing car stereo controls as with this Dice Electronics pairing.