Kenwood Ups The Ante On Connected Car Products


LAS VEGAS — Kenwood has again expanded the number of multimedia receivers that are ready for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, with 15 models across the eponymous and Kenwood eXcelon product lines.

With a wired connection between smartphone and receiver, Apple CarPlay provides iPhone users access a full interface on the Kenwood receiver to use apps in the vehicle. Apple CarPlay also now lets users access online music service TIDAL, as well as SiriusXM Satellite Radio.

The most significant improvement, says Kenwood, has been with Android Auto. Now, users of five of Kenwood’s top models can access Android Auto’s voice control and app integration features with a wired or wireless connection. What does this mean? Users can leave their phones in pockets or bags and retain full, and safe, use of the phone’s navigation, communication and streaming applications.

Also new with Android-powered smartphones is support for the Google Assistant, which lets users request and receive information using their voice, as well as control compatible smart devices connected to their Google account. All multimedia receivers that support wired or wireless Android Auto work with the Google Assistant.

“Years ago, making better in-car entertainment was all about adding more features to our radios,” said Tony Mercado, marketing manager for the Kenwood brand. “Now, consumers determine their experience for the most part in how they curate and access content on their smartphones. Our goal is to extend that experience into the vehicle in a way that is accessible while driving, and expand on it with premium audio and visual components. We feel our 2018 multimedia lineup has accomplished this.”