Harman said at CES it is planning a concerted push in the aftermarket to offer “numerous accessory type products” that include anything a consumer might want after purchasing a vehicle.
The might include Qi devices for wirelessly charging smartphones and other devices in the car.
“Changing the head unit in the car is no longer the first step [when upgrading the audio system]. Now it’s about connecting the cellphone,” said new Harman VP and GM, Global Automotive Audio Aftermarket Bill Turner.
He expects the company will use its new “Signal Doctor” technology shown at CES in a Bluetooth amplifier. Signal Doctor is new real time, audio analyzing software that uses probability algorithms to restore in real time what was lost in compression.
Turner said he plans to take advantage of the many resources Harman offers including its advanced design capabilities in home audio accessories and products.
Harman has a leading position in a number of countries outside the U.S. in car audio and its goal is to boost its share in the U.S.
It is devoting more resources to car audio in this country as the category now falls under Harman’s Automotive Service Division, Turner said. The company is adding 2-3 new posts to expand its product development team, he said.
At CES, in traditional car audio products, Harman replaced its key GTO-8 car speaker series with a new mid-priced GX line and launched a new GT7 entry level series of coaxial kits.
In marine audio, two new coaxial speakers were launched under Infinity and several new speakers models under JBL.
The speakers use Harman’s “True 4 Ohm” design and “Plus One” technology.