Advanced Backup Camera Heading to 12V Specialists

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Pearl RearVision

The new high tech backup camera developed by Apple engineers is now heading to 12 volt specialists.

The product is the Pearl RearVision, which launched in Crutchfield and Amazon around October this year and just won the top SEMA award for new products in Mobile Electronics.

It’s a solar powered wireless (WiFi) dual camera system in a snap on license plate frame that is paired with an OBD 2 device to send a rear vision image to a smartphone.

The company, Pearl Automation, is exploring how best to bring the product to 12 volt retailers and said it expects to enter 12 volt retailers early next year.

It hired a new head of sales, Gregg Wilkes, who is helping lead the entry into 12 volt stores.

Pearl Automotive will display at CES in the InstallerNet booth.

The Pearl RearVision’s dual HD cameras embedded in a license plate frame deliver up to 180 degree views of the area behind the car.

The license plate frame itself is solar powered and works with a companion adapter that plugs into the car’s OBD2 port.  The system is user installable in 10-15 minutes, said Pearl. But the company believes that many people will seek professional installation and so it is pursuing distribution through car audio shops.

The OBD2 adapter contains advanced image processing technology to flatten the two fish eye images received from the cameras and it sends the video in real-time to your phone (iPhone or Android).  There’s a customizable “tap to pan” feature to see what’s behind the car.

You also get audible alerts through a speaker in the ODB2 module.

The RearVision launches automatically sending a rear image to your Android phone when the car is turned on.  Regarding Apple phones, a spokesperson said, “Due to iOS platform limitations, we’re unable to launch automatically. We do have an update coming before the end of the year where we’ll send iOS users a push notification to launch the Pearl App when they get in their car.”

A phone mount is included in the price of $500.

The system charges via solar power but if your car has been stored in a garage for weeks you can snap off the license plate frame and attach a USB cord to charge the system at home.

Pearl was co-founded by three ex-Apple employees who help develop products including the iPod and iPhone. The company is expected to develop other car safety or autonomous driving devices.

To watch a quick video on the Pearl RearVision visit


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  1. Using it exclusively to see a trailer hitch would be the only use I see here. At a time when the user can take 45 seconds to get their phone out, mount it, launch the app and get it to connect before moving the vehicle. That simply isn’t going to happen for normal everyday backup cam/sensor use.

  2. Well said Rocco, especially we independent installers need to preserve our livelihoods and our suppliers should note this industry plight. With costs escalating and a workforce that is diminishing, profitability is key. Can we make our living it on installation labor alone?

  3. Useless,
    No auto app startup, if it syncs up at all to your phone. Maybe hardwire it, and give us a video output and we could revisit it. Also it takes too long to grab, The only way for safety and reliability for our customers is to hardwire a proper camera with the proper perspective and a real monitor. Shipped it back within 48 hours after testing it.
    P.S. It erodes our livelihood, Why give it shelf space. It will be online next week 85 dollars cheaper with free shipping. And then later it will have a usb update that you will be doing for free for your customer. Spending the day to downloading drivers and apps in your install bay.

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