By ZAM KARIMbytz@thestar.com.my
Local car audio maker Pixel Energy Sdn Bhd will be one of the first to roll out Android-based ICE (in-car entertainment) systems next month.
The audio receivers will run on Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) operating system which will have a 7in or 8in touchscreen with a resolution of 800 x 400-pixels.
Everything that you can do with an Android smartphone can also be done here - you can surf the Net, download and install apps, listen to Internet radio stations, watch YouTube videos and read e-mail messages.
However, to connect to the Internet you will have to tether it to a smartphone via its built-in WiFi capability or use a mobile broadband USB dongle.
Standard features include a DVD player, FM tuner and Bluetooth for pairing with a phone for hands-free calling.
The Android ICE is the brainchild of Pixel Energy director, C.K. Kho. An industry veteran with more than 28 years of experience under his belt, Kho is also known as Dr Audio among the local ICE community.
The project started in 2008 as he wanted to further enhance the company's ICE offerings to be more than just a media player and saw the chance when the Android OS came along.
The company has appointed Amerion Enterprise Sdn Bhd as its sole distributor here and the products will be sold under the Stealth brand.
The Stealth models will be powered by a 1.2GHz ARM cortex A8 processor with FreeScale Chipset (iMx5) and 512MB RAM. For navigation, users can use Google Maps app which is free or pay for Papago! M9.
The price for an original replacement unit for Toyota, Honda and Hyundai starts from RM2,900 and a universal model from RM2,500.