Clarion unveils dashboard PC

GARDENA, Calif. — Car-audio specialist Clarion Corp. has introduced a computer for cars and trucks that integrates audio, computing functions, navigation, and wireless communications — and fits the same spot on the dash typically occupied by your stereo.

The Clarion AutoPC is powered by the Microsoft Windows CE operating system used for palmtop PCs and uses CUE Network’s AutoFM receiver and FM subcarrier wireless network for two-way messaging. Voice recognition software allows you control the computer’s functions without taking your eyes off the road.

And through “speech synthesis” technology, the AutoPC will “speak” back to you, reading the displayed text. With optional map data, it can provide turn-by-turn instructions from your starting point to your destination.

Coupled with an additional Global Positioning System (GPS) receiver, the unit provides automatic starting point identification and location updates as well as pinpoints the driver’s exact locale.

A wireless receiver provides access to an array of customized information, such as real-time traffic reports, news updates, numeric paging, and E-mail alerts; and a vehicle diagnostic module that enables the AutoPC to receive data from the vehicle’s on-board computer system.

The unit also boasts the first ever in-dash Clarion quality CD audio and CD ROM drive, which supports an optional six-disc CD changer through Universal Serial Bus (USB). The backlit 8-color LCD screen provides consumers with an easy to-read, icon-driven user interface.

The suggested retail price for the basic Clarion AutoPC unit is $1299 US.

Have your say

This is a moderated forum. Comments will no longer be published unless they are accompanied by a first and last name and a verifiable email address. (Today's Trucking will not publish or share the email address.) Profane language and content deemed to be libelous, racist, or threatening in nature will not be published under any circumstances.