Rand McNally, a Chicago-based company that specializes in maps, navigation, road travel, and trip planning, has launched a new portable infotainment system meant to turn any car into a connected car for $400 – a price that is sure to get the attention of all car owners looking for an upgrade.
In a nutshell, OverDryve is a dashboard tablet that allows car owners to enjoy some of the features usually found in newer, more expensive cars without having to dispose of their older vehicles. Its aim is to make navigation and connectivity more accessible and create a better, more enjoyable and safer driving experience for drivers.
Bringing Connected Car Technology to Older Cars
Older cars and new technology seemed like an impossible match, which left many car owners feeling frustrated and unable to access modern tech, such as music-streaming apps, voice-recognition, wireless connectivity, and hands-free texting.
[ Image Credits: Rand McNally ]
What makes OverDryve so appealing is its promise to give car owners a chance to upgrade their older vehicles and enjoy some of the benefits of driving a connected car without breaking the bank or trading up.
Considering the fact that many owners are interested in the safety and connected features available on luxury cars equipped with the latest technology but are not ready or willing to sell their older cars, this might just be the best device on the market right now for their specific needs.
What Can this Device Actually Do?
A device that grants access to some of the same features you would usually find on a connected car for a price that is considerably lower sounds like a pretty good deal. But can it deliver on its promises and actually boost the driver’s capabilities?
Well, let’s take a look at some of the device’s most promising features:
- Provides spoken directions to restaurants, coffee shops, post offices and more. You only need to speak your destination
- The tablet is equipped with Rand McNally’s navigation
- OverDryve also has an extra GPS antenna meant to provide greater accuracy
- Advanced routing features are available, such as split-screen junction view and multiple lane views
- Built-in dash camera can record the road ahead
- Safety sensors that warn drivers when they’re approaching a car too fast and there’s a risk of collision
- The tablet’s camera shows drivers what’s behind them when the car is backing up
- The device can monitor things like fuel efficiency and tire pressure
- OverDryve can play music from the Internet
- Allows drivers to download their favorite music-streaming apps and listen to music using the car’s audio system
- The tablet can read podcasts and audio-books
- Can provide audible news on various topics, weather forecast, traffic, and more through Wi-Fi connectivity
- Drivers can make hands-free phone calls and texts using voice command
- The tablet’s Smart Assistant reads incoming texts out loud
By allowing drivers to perform certain actions without them having to take their hands off the wheel, the tablet promises to eliminate distractions, increase safety, and ultimately make the driving experience more enjoyable.
Other Aspects Worth Mentioning
OverDryve can be safely locked on the car’s dashboard, thanks to its magnetic mount similar to a regular navigation system, so you won’t have to worry about it slipping. Also, the device can be used for multiple cars, so it can easily be passed between different family members who each have their own car.
It’s also important to mention that the device can work as a tablet once removed from its mount. This means you can use it to watch movies, go on social media, play games or check your emails. This is definitely a nice feature families with kids will most likely appreciate.
OverDryve will launch three versions of the tablet, each with its own price. Those interested will have to pay $299 for a 7-inch tablet, $399 for an 8-inch tablet, or $499 for a 10-inch tablet. Currently, only the $399 version can be ordered.
Over to You
Now that you know what are some of OverDryve‘s most important features, I would like to know what your opinion on the subject is as well. Do you think the tablet is capable of turning an ordinary drive into a connected car experience, or do you see it as being a temporary solution at best?
I’d love to hear what you have to say, so feel free to share your thoughts and opinions in the comments section below.
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