Clarion, more often than not associated with in-car entertainment systems, has just released the Next GATE smartphone controller for iPhone that will easily hook up and controls applications which reside on the iPhone, paving the way for advanced functionality in any vehicle. Some of the main vehicle-friendly app partners comprise of TuneIn, Pandora, Vlingo, INRIX Traffic, and InfoGation, although there are also plans to increase the partnership role. Clarion’s Next GATE intends to leverage the power of the smartphone and its wireless connectivity, while its new Smart Access Cloud Telematics Service will let users download additional approved apps under development now as well as down the road.
To put it in a nutshell, Next GATE enhances the way the iPhone is used in the vehicle via integration, interface and intelligence. Thanks to a simple mounting and connection method, the Next GATE will have a broad consumer appeal, and it will also feature a microSD memory card slot, an integrated speaker, blue LED buttons and indicator, auxiliary audio output, a built-in microphone, an external microphone and a 7-inch digital WVGA touch panel LCD monitor. Do expect the iPhone 4/4S to be compatible with the Next GATE, and you would do well to download the Clarion Smart Access app manager for free via the iTunes app store beforehand. [Press Release]
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