The Devium Dash Kickstarter project is a replacement stereo system for your car with one big difference. Its brain is your iPhone 4 or iPhone 4S. The unique Devium Dash is composed of two parts. The body sits in your car and provides 4 x 50w to power your speakers, two 2v Maxim preamps for front and rear/sub, as well as AUX-in and a video pass-through for an in-car display. The faceplate attaches magnetically to the body and docks your iPhone or iPod touch. This means that, for example, if Apple releases an iPhone 5 with a different form factor, you don't need to replace the entire Devium Dash when you upgrade; you simply acquire a new faceplate adapter.
Once slotted into the Devium Dash, your iPhone or iPod is fully powered and you then have access to all your iTunes and streaming media, hands free Bluetooth calling, turn-by-turn navigation apps and, of course, Siri. Because the Devium Dash holds your device in landscape orientation, they are planning several custom apps such as a phone dialer and substitute "home screen" with app shortcuts to make the experience better. They're also teasing a kit that will let your iPhone or iPod touch communicate with your car's on-board computer.
Obviously the downside is that you have to remove your existing in-car entertainment system to fit the Devium Dash. They maintain this is no more difficult than installing a GPS unit, so if you are happy enough to do that, and the Devim Dash is compatible with your car model, then installation should be pretty simple.
Mobile devices like the iPhone and iPod touch are taking an increasingly important role in automotive technologies. Several prominent systems like Microsoft Sync and OnStar now interface with iOS apps, and electric cars like the Chevy Volt and Focus Electric provide for even higher levels of remote control. For people who have older cars, however, mobile device integration has been extremely limited. While focused on entertainment and travel assistance, products like the Devium Dash open the door to the next generation of driver experience.
The Kickstarter project has so far attracted pledges of over $20,000 which is just under the half way mark before it gets funded. It still has 45 days to run so we will keep a close eye on it to see if it makes it.
The Devium Dash is expected to ship in July, 2012.
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UK editor at iMore, mobile technology lover and air conditioning design engineer.