By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Two suppliers of lower-end car stereo, Dual and Jensen, are offering their first all-in-one A/V navigation (AVN) models, as prices on the segment continue to fall.
In addition, Valor is offering one of the lowest-priced models to date at International CES, on a new NVG-606W in-dash DVD/monitor/navigation unit at an estimated street price of $699.
Last year, most devices carried entry-level prices of $999, said Dual marketing and sales executive VP Clyde Podraza. "We saw what happened as prices dropped in multimedia-only pieces. Once they got closer to popular price points, sales really took off. My take on this is the market is already going the way of multimedia."
Tom Malone, president of Audiovox Electronics, which supplies the Jensen brand, said, "People want navigation — they want that OE experience in an aftermarket system. It's the one feature everyone's driving to get to a price point that is attractive to the proper demographic."
Valor's NVG-606W double-DIN AVN has a fixed 6.5-inch screen and front-panel auxiliary input with built-in SD card navigation so users can watch a DVD while they navigate. It is expected to ship in February.
Jensen's first AVN unit is the VM9022HDN with built-in HD Radio and integrated Bluetooth at a suggested retail of $1,199. The double-DIN unit is also satellite radio ready with iPod control with a supplied cable, and it includes an integrated center-channel amplifier. The company said it will offer products at lower price points in the future.
Dual's first AVN model is the XDVDN8190, which uses SD card-based navigation so users can playback CDs and DVDs while navigating. It has built-in Bluetooth, iPod control with a supplied cable, 7-inch TFT, multizone capability and rear-view camera capability. It also has 5.1 RCA preamp outputs and will ship in the first quarter at $999 to $1,099.
A double-DIN version, the XDVDN8290, has a 6.5-inch fully motorized screen and adds power for a dedicated center channel. It ships in the first quarter at $999 to $1,099.
Pioneer is unveiling an AVIC-Z3, an upgrade to the current AVIC-Z2, said the company.
Kenwood is showing two new AVN models. The DNX5120 has a built-in Garmin user interface. At $1,000, it is priced $400 below Kenwood's 2007 model. It is a double-DIN unit with 6.1-inch fixed touchscreen and front-panel auxiliary-input jack. It has Bluetooth, USB capability, iPod control and ships in March. At the high end is the Excelon DNX8120 AVN, which includes integrated Bluetooth developed with Parrot and an advanced user interface at $1,600.
JVC is introducing a new in-dash navigation double-DIN model KD-NX7000 with pre-installed upgradeable maps and built-in real time Navteq traffic and Bluetooth. It has a 7-inch monitor and a proximity sensor that illuminates the unit when a hand nears the device. It allows navigating while using various audio and video sources. It is HD-Radio and satellite radio ready, has USB-based iPod audio and video control, DivX and SD card slot, and it is rear-view camera and CD changer ready. It will ship in May at a suggested retail of $1,299.
Panasonic is showing two all-in-one AVN models at price points to be announced. including the single-DIN CN-NX100U and double-DIN CN-NW100U. The former has a front-panel A/V minijack for iPod video or another video source and DivX compatibility. Both models offer a 7-inch touchpanel LCD, DVD receivers, built-in Bluetooth for stereo audio streaming and hands-free calling plus phone-book transfer to the radio. Users can also access point of interest information from the navigation device, such as the nearest Chinese restaurant, and then dial the restaurant via the radio.
Both models are compatible with satellite radio, HD Radio, and iPod audio and video, and both have USB iPod and flash-drive control with additional control of some Microsoft-based MP3 players.
One of Alpine's new in-dash A/V units docks with the Alpine Blackbird B200 PND. The double-DIN flagship IVA-W505 DVD/monitor can now display album art and has larger control buttons, compared with an earlier version. It has a 7-inch touchscreen, full-speed USB iPod control and is HD-Radio ready with iTunes tagging. It is also satellite radio ready and is expected to ship in May at a suggested $999 (without the Blackbird B200 PND).
This TWICE webinar, hosted by senior editor Alan Wolf, will take a look at what may be the hottest CE products at retail that will be sold during the all-important fourth quarter. Top technologies, market strategies and industry trends will be discussed with industry analysts and executives.