updated 05:11 pm EST, Tue January 7, 2014
New unit uses MHL, USB, or HDMI for video output
Sony Electronics today introduced the first ever Smartphone Cradle Receiver allowing multiple brands of smartphones to serve as in-dash touchscreens. Sony also launched its first in-dash entertainment unit with an HDMI and an MHL (Mobile High-Definition Link) port to mirror the display of the iPhone 5, 5s, and 5c with the Lightning Digital A/V Adapter, and the iPhone 4 and 4s with the 30-pin Digital A/V Adapter and other equipped smartphones.
Sony's new XSP-N1BT, the industry's first double-DIN Smartphone Cradle Receiver, features a clamping system that holds a wide range of smartphones securely in the dash. With its second-generation AppRemote interface, the smartphone's touchscreen controls head-unit functions through Bluetooth (Android devices) or via USB (iPhone). AppRemote also facilitates voice operation of both the head unit and the smartphone. Thanks to its IR remote, the XSP-N1BT offers CD, USB and tuner source functionality even without a smartphone. The IR remote can also be utilized to select apps and head unit sources displayed on the App Remote menu screen.
Sony's A/V lineup runs the gamut from the opening price point XAV-65 receiver to the ultra-premium XAV-712HD receiver. The XAV-712HD includes MirrorLink, Bluetooth, HD Radio, HDMI and MHL ports, and App Remote version 2. It also includes a Micro USB to MHL cable as well as an HDMI cable.
The new XSP-N1BT will be available in May for $250. The XAV-65 receiver and the XAV-712HD receiver will be available in January for about $250 and $750, respectively.