Connecting smartphones to car dashboards isn’t exactly new. Having those dashboards support Google’s Android Auto or Apple’s CarPlay, or both, is just a bit newer. But doing all of that without getting tangled in USB cords is definitely fresh off the press. That’s exactly what Pioneer is delivering with its three new 2018 in-dash NEX receivers, promising the convenience of wirelessly connecting your Android phone or iPhone to your car. It can even control your home from a distance too!
More often than not, connecting your smartphone to your car involves plugging it in via a USB cable. That holds whether you’re simply playing your phone’s music or running the full shebang of Android Auto or Apple CarPlay. While there are some benefits, like charging your phone at the same time, there are more inconveniences involved. Especially in connecting and disconnecting the phone without taking your eyes or hands off the road.
Pioneer’s new NEX in-dash receivers, the AVIC-W8400NEX, AVIC-W6400NEX, and AVH-W4400NEX, all feature built-in Wi-Fi connectivity. They’re specifically designed to let you wirelessly connect your smartphones, making them the market’s first receivers to offer both wireless and wired options. Yes, you can still connect through USB cable if that’s how you roll.
The dashes can also control your home, but it’s not exactly magic. It does require you to have smart lighting, smart thermostat, smart locks, etc. But thanks to Android Auto and Apple CarPlay supporting Google Assistant and Siri, respectively, you can control all of that from your car using just your voice. No tapping and no cables.
These third-gen 2018 NEX receivers are boasted to be Pioneer’s most feature-packed yet. Don’t be surprised about their prices then. The AVIC-W8400NEX will retail for $1,200, while the AVIC-W6400NEX goes for $800. The cheapest of the lot is the AVH-W4400NEX, which has a $700 price tag.