Pioneer Brings iPhone Apps to the Car Dashboard

Pioneer has introduced AppRadio, an in-car entertainment system capable of integrating and displaying iPhone apps on its screen. AppRadio is basically a 6.1-inch multi-touch display with WVGA (800×480) resolution designed to be mounted and completely integrated to your car. It can be viewed as a secondary peripheral display for the iPhone 4 apps. Before the apps could run on the AppRadio they need to be adjusted to be rendered on the secondary screen. This is normally a simple task that many developers could probably finish in a couple of days.

Ted Cardenas, director of marketing for the car electronics division of Pioneer Electronics (USA) Inc. has said in a statement.

Pioneer is rethinking connectivity by tapping into the power of the smartphone, while simultaneously providing a solution that safely merges the consumer’s connected lifestyle into the vehicle. AppRadio fully embraces the iPhone, which has become the window to our mobile connectivity and provides a comprehensive and safer way to use apps in the car.

Apple’s standard 30-pin connector is used to connect the iPhone 4 with the AppRadio. Currently, there are only a handful of apps available. Google Maps, INRIX, MotionX-GPS Drive, Rdio, and Pandora Radio are among the ones currently available. Pioneer is optimistic that more developers will work on “Pioneer Centric Apps” in near future. For safety reasons, some app functions will be locked if the parking brake are not engaged. Distracting functions in the apps like “searches” may be disabled, and each app can have its own customized settings.

Although Pioneer remained iPhone centric for AppRadio and didn’t talk much about Android version, they have certainly left the door open. Android is expected to catch-up in a not-so-distant future. AppRadio will be available in late June for less than $500.