iPad and the Car

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I’ve written about using the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad in the car before, but this latest one takes the cake. It’s an in-dash kit designed to replace the factory car stereo with an iPad. It’s made by the fine people at Scosche, who are known for not only making car stereo components, but also iPod, iPhone and now iPad accessories.

When we showed you the Tacoma iPad install, the iPad was definitely a custom touch. It was literally carved into the dashboard, and made it took hours of work to make it look natural. This is obviously beyond the skills of most amateur installers, but besides that, it doesn’t give you a plug and play option for installing the iPad, then taking it out when need be. This kit takes the concept from the Tacoma and makes it a bolt-in install.

The mount replaces the factory stereo with a plastic panel that has a 3.5mm mic plug and a USB port at the base. This panel has a ball joint that sticks out approximately two inches or so, to keep the iPad away from the dash. There is a large plastic piece that pops onto the ball joint, then locks the iPad in place. A special cable connects the 30-pin dock connector to the USB port and mic plug.

In the Subaru they show in the demo, the iPad looks a little bit big. It looks like it covers up the vents a little bit, and it’s not really that practical. Plus they mention having satellite radio and Pandora on hand, but really, that’s only the case if you’ve got a solid 3G connection or you’re parked.

It’s not a perfect solution for every car, but I do think it’s a pretty nice one for some cars. It gives you video and audio all in one unit, and it integrates it into the factory system. Who knows if it will ever get made, but I know I’d be in line to get one if it did.

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