DOW Electronics Partners with Kenwood

DOW Electronics is very excited to announce that it has partnered with Kenwood USA! Continuing our 12 Volt segment growth, DOW Electronics will be distributing Kenwood’s high quality products to our Florida retailers. This week we’re taking a look at the innovation and quality that Kenwood provides, something our retailers will be very familiar with already.

For over 40 years, Kenwood has relied on its engineering prowess to design innovative, great-sounding equipment that’s easy to use and built to last. Kenwood USA, founded in the United States in 1961 as a subsidiary of Kenwood Corporation of Japan, is recognized for providing products that deliver quality, performance and value. Kenwood has built a reputation for innovation in the consumer electronics market. Included in their many innovations are: first to create an anti-theft car cassette deck that could be slid out of the dash; first with an automatic broadcast sensor system and automatic noise reduction; and the first polypropylene speaker cones.

Kenwood is one of the first aftermarket companies to be able to fully integrate their products with the car’s factory technology using Car Portal for iDatalink* – a real solution for Ford SYNC owners. In a collaborative effort with ADS* (Automotive Data Solutions), a Ford SYNC customer can now keep the existing SYNC features like iPod control, Bluetooth, Satellite radio and 911 assist, and seamlessly interface them with Kenwood’s advanced user interface and Garmin navigation system found on a range of Kenwood DNX receivers to communicate and display the on-board SYNC features of the car. The optional iDatalink interface/wiring harness will give owners of compatible Ford/Lincoln vehicles the best navigation option on the market by adding an affordable Kenwood DNX model as an alternative to expensive factory navigation solutions.

As our 12 volt specialist Mike Eckley explains, “Integration is a huge part of where the industry is heading. The cars now a day are a lot tougher than when I started out in the install bays in the early 90’s and having Kenwood offering products that allow the consumers, retail shop owners and installers integration that fully communicates to the OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) installed factory technologies is great”

Kenwood offers innovative features in all of their model ranges. Many models feature dual USB input and blue tooth auto pairing with iPhones. Kenwood offers three full featured multimedia models. The new DNN770HD model features built-in WiFi technology that can access a dedicated cloud-based Kenwood server or content stored on connected smart phone or mass storage device.

“Kenwood offers one of the most diverse lines in the industry, one of the best features is the trickle down technology,” according to Eckley. “This means that features found in the ultra-high end line of Kenwood Excelon in dash cd players, amps and speakers can be seen throughout the rest of the line, all the way down to the entry-level products. This helps tell a good story when talking to the customer.”

Be sure to visit DOW Electronics at Spring Break Nationals during March 2nd-3rd to get hands on experience of the new Kenwood products.

*iDatalink /ADS (Automotive Data Solutions) is another brand proudly distributed by DOW Electronics.


Trending in 12Volt

So far, 2012 has seen lots of changes in technology, from tablets and iPads to Application Stores and thinner, sleeker models of phones, TVs and more.  The 12 volt industry, or Car and Marine Audio and Video, is no different – so, we asked resident 12 Volt Specialist, Jeremy Doran, what the top trends in the industry are today.  Jeremy has 17+ years of professional installation experience, is MECP certified and is a graduate of Mobile Dynamics, which has enabled him to work with some of the most creative and accomplished installers in the business.

One major trend is the integration of iPads and smartphones to your vehicle for music, internet radio, movies, navigation and whatever else you have your device set up for.  These can be installed into a car using a custom kit within hours, and – PRESTO – the world at your fingertips.  Getting directions, finding a restaurant or locating the nearest gas station has never been easier. Check out the video below of DOW Electronics retailer Soundwaves of Tampa and their installation of the iPad Mini, just hours after release.

Doran noted that add on Bluetooth systems are in high demand because many states are making cell phone usage illegal while driving.  In relation, radios with built in Bluetooth capabilities are popular for hands free phone usage and music streaming.  In car Wi-Fi hot spots for constant internet connection are also rising in popularity.

“You’re seeing an increase of people wanting to stay connected while driving, but also taking safety into consideration,” stated Doran. “Full integration of your smartphone or tablet to your vehicle is extremely popular, because now people want the ability to have their text messages, Facebook feeds or twitter posts read to them while driving, but without risking an accident or ticket.  And since we all depend on these devices and save so much information to them, it only makes sense to connect them with another important piece of machinery to all of us – our vehicles.”

In addition to media usage, smartphones are being used as remote controls for monitoring of vehicles, keyless entry, remote start, security and GPS tracking, but these are not the only trends currently popping up.  Also popular right now are devices that unlock manufacturer settings so that navigation and video operate while driving, LED daytime running lights and aftermarket HID lights.

“These aftermarket changes are ways the individual customer can make their vehicle unique, and tailor it to their individual needs,” stated Doran.  “Whether they are doing it for style or function, these updates allow each person to get exactly what they want from both their vehicles and smart devices.”