As mentioned earlier, I figured out I wanted a true HD screen. The BMW CIC screen is better than the CCC screen, but still not the best. Unfortunately, no one makes a 8.8" HD screen, so I knew that I'd I'd be going down in screen size when I got ready to make my next purchase. Given that, I was on a mission to get the largest possible screen I could.
The whole purpose of this venture is to have Android in the car, and pretty much bypass the car's navi and entertainment functions altogether. When I was thinking traditionally, I was thinking about what components to add to augment what was in place, but I slowly started to realize what I really wanted to do is *replace* a bunch of that. Instead of getting an AndroidTV and a screen and GPS....why not get a phone or tablet? So I started searching. Outside the US, there are dozens of different companies that make Android devices, quality devices, for a fraction of the cost of what we see here
. My first purchase was a Zopo C2. The rundown:
-Android 4.2 operating system, better reliability and compatibility.
-MTK 6589 Cortex A7 Quad-Core 1.2GHz CPU and PowerVR SGX544 GPU
-5.0 inch TFT 5-point capacitive touch screen with resolution 1920 x 1080 pixels.
-1GB RAM, 4GB Nand Flash, support external TF Card / Micro SD card up to 64GB.
-Supports 2G: GSM 850/900/1800/1900MHz; 3G: WCDMA 850/2100MHz.
-Dual cameras: 5.0Megapixel front camera; 13.0Megapixel rear camera with flashlight and auto focus.
-Supports 802.11 b/g/n WiFi, Bluetooth 4.0, GPS, G-Sensor, FM Radio, Multi-language, etc.
You can search for add'l info on the web to see all the specs. Bang. TrueHD. Well, it came in, and it was small....smaller than what I would like to have. So, rather than send it back, I'm going to use it in my truck. I plan putting a hinge on the rearview mirror so that the mirror and surround flip up, and the phone will be mounted inside. I'll cut out the back of the housing so that the camera lens can see and function as a DVR. No need for a head unit anymore. I currently use a Samsung headset to connect my phone for audio, so I'll be using this unit now, instead. Close the lid, and bang, stealthmode. More on that later, though.
The search continued. Dynavin makes a 7" Android setup for non-M3 E9X-series cars http://www.dynavin.com/products/product_dnv_e60.php
so I was trying to get as close to 7" as I could. There are several 7" tablets out, but none are HD, and they are all too big to fit in the stock display, but a phablet....after looking for a long, long time, I couldn't find anything larger than 6". I knew that wouldn't do, so I kept looking....and looking....and looking. I finally came across some stories about a Sony called the Xperia Z which was supposed to have a 6.44" 1080p screen, but it isn't slated until a Q4 release. BUT, that story led me to another story about another phablet that was released last week, with the same 6.45" screen
Hot DAMN, here we go! The phone is the Firefly V65, and comes in a 16gb (V65 Lite) or 32gb variety. The specs, taken from http://android-sale.com/firefly-v65.html
Processor: 1.5GHz MTK MT6589T quad-core chipset
Screen Size: 6.45" touchscreen
Display resolution: FHD screen, 1920*1080 pixel
Color Support: 16 million colors
Screen Technology: Multi-touch screen
Camera Resulotion: 13MP rear camera
4.9MP front camera, digital zoom
Connectivity Technology: GSM + WCDMA
Network Band: GSM 850/900/1800/1900 MHz + WCDMA 850/2100MHz
Data Technology: EDGE, GPRS (HSDPA 7.2Mbps, HSUPA 5.76Mbps; EDGE; GPRS)
Bluetooth: Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
WLan: Wi-Fi IEEE 802.11 b/g
USB: USB 2.0
GPS: GPS/A-GPS (Built-in GPS chipset)
Video Player: AVI、MP4、3GP、MOV、MKV、FLV
Audio Player: FLAC、APE、MP3、OGG、AMR、AAC
Ringing Tones: Downloadable
Message: SMS, MMS, Email
Phone Book: 10000 contacts
Interface/Port: 3.5mm earphone jack / mini USB
Battery: Li-on battery 2500mAh
Standby Time: 150-200 hours
Built-in Memory: 16GB ROM + 2GB RAM
Memory Card: Support microSD/microSDHC memory card, up to 64GB, support App2SD
It also supports USB OTG! So, I ordered it, and it came in today. The plan is to concoct a housing around it so that it hides the white surround and arrange it so that it fits over the stock display so I can flip it down to see the stock display, and flip it up when I'm done. I haven't determined if the camera will bybass the stock camera for the Logitech currently mounted, but at this point, I'm halfway there. More in the next few weeks. I have some miniature linear actuators from another project, so I may automate it, we'll see. In one fell swoop, I was able to eliminate the need for an external power supply, an external GPS, and a bunch of wiring.
Here are pics....L to R....V65, C2, Galaxy S II.