By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Alpine Wants Dealers To Socialize
TORRANCE, CALIF. – Alpine wants its dealers to socialize.
The aftermarket car electronics company has developed a social-media handbook to help dealers engage in their own social-media activities. The company is also encouraging dealers to participate in its Play Big social-media campaign, which encourages dealers to post and share pictures of the dash fabrications they have crafted to install Alpine’s 8-inch INE-Z928HD A/V navigation system.
Play Big is the theme for all marketing activities supporting the INE-Z928HD, which offers the biggest screen of any A/V-nav system in the aftermarket.
The first edition of the handbook focuses its 24 pages on the value of social-media engagement via Facebook because it is the most widely used social media platform, the company said. Additional versions of the handbook are planned.
iSimple Adds TranzIt Blu HF Universal Car Kit
CLEARWATER, FLA. — iSimple expanded its line of universal car kits with the introduction of the $149-suggested TranzIt Blu HF (ISFM2351).
With a single button press, the newest Bluetooth car kit from the Aamp of America brand lets drivers use Siri, SVoice and Google Now voice-recognition technology for hands-free navigation, messaging and calling.
The kit includes a universal direct-connect stereo signal modulator, a Bluetooth transceiver, a dash-mounted multifunction control button, and a noise-canceling microphone. It also features A2DP streaming. A free Android and Apple app provides access to device tuning and hands-free safety features.
Metra Expands Ford, Toyota Kits
HOLLY HILL, FLA. — Metra Electronics announced the availability of its single-DIN and double-DIN radio-replacement solutions for the Toyota Rav4 2013 and newer vehicles.
The 99-8242G single-DIN and 95-8242G Double- DIN kits are painted to match the factory dash. The single- DIN version features a storage pocket for ISO-DIN installations. Both kits are engineered for use with the company’s 70-1761 wire harness in vehicles with basic sound systems.
Metra also introduced the 99-5830B kit for 2013 and newer Ford F-150 vehicles with 4.3-inch screens but without Ford’s MyTouch. The kit, painted matte black, is scratch-resistant and features soft-touch buttons. The display is said to retain all factory control functions, as well as Ford Sync and driver information menus.
MESA Adds 14 Gold Members
ARVADA, COLO. — The Mobile Electronics Specialists of America (MESA) has added 14 Gold members, bringing the buying group’s total member count to 61.
The Gold program is geared toward car audio retailers that want MESA’s marketing, educational and group buying benefits but don’t meet the Platinum program volume requirements. The new program was announced in June.
The 61 members now represent 162 storefront locations in 33 states and $168 million in yearly car audio sales, the group said.
The new members include: Tunes-N-Tint, Lakeland, Fla.; Auto Audio and Video, Little Rock, Ark.; Sounds Fast, Bend, Ore.; TNT, Victoria, Texas; Sound Connection, Brainerd, Minn.; HighWay HiFi, Melbourne, Fla.; Sound Depot and Performance, Gainesville, Fla.; Precision Audio, Bainbridge, Ga.; Audio Logic, Hollywood, Fla.; Audio Source, Columbus, Ind.; Car Tunes, League City, Texas; WeeBee Audio, Lancaster, Pa.; Westminster Speed and Sound, Westminster, Md.; and Santa Fe Autosound, Overland Park, Kan.
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.