Android Headunit Branding is an interesting concept, it is the same idea that nowadays every western company strives to promote – the BRAND. Build up a following of your brand and becoming seen as the best brand, the consumers will by anything based on only the brand name. Even when common sense says that other products are a better fit, give a better value for money or are generally best, some still just by the brand.
Branding is a recent phenomenon, and features heavily in the minds of those in the West. Living in first world countries we put the brand name above all other factors when deciding to purchase as it gives a confidence that we have made the right decision.
Android Headunit brands
Some companies have caught onto this branding idea and created the android headunit brands like Pumpkin, ATOTO, Erisin and Xtrons. They all feature heavily in the android headunit brands. But there are many other companies trying to make a mark in the android headunit brand name race, like idoing, HiKity, JOYX, PENTLY 7, iAuch, Ossuret and Camecho to name but a few. It is as if they just pluck letters out of a hat to make a name and maybe they do (with the exception for GOFORJUMP – yes, there is a brand called GOFORJUMP). All that matters, is to succeed in selling android headunits to the general public is to have a brand name. The West needs a brand name to buy an android headunit.
Go for a jump is a shorting of the English insult – go for a running jump into a lake. The irony is that a seller could easily say that to any dissatisfied customer. So take the android head unit brand name GOFORJUMP as a warning.
Buying unbranded android headunits
Buying unbranded is seen as low quality, a poor choice because there is no name on the box, no logo on the printer paper slip, no embossed plastic logo on the case, it can’t be any good. But nearly all the android headunit sellers buy the mass produced Chinese unbranded finished units and brand them for sale. This branding adds pennies to the cost but can instantly multiply the cost that people will pay for the same item without the branding, go figure.
There is around a dozen companies that bring together the parts that make an android headunit. You will never have heard of the names of these companies and they come out of the factory without a brand. The branders will load their custom firmware, add stickers with serial numbers and logos, then pack them into a retail logo printed box and instantly they have become ready for someone to buy. All these brand names you read that are attached to an android headunit are most likely not the manufacturer of the hardware, they are the sales pitch and just an exercise to sell more product.
So, which is a good brand name?
After all this, people will still say ‘only ATOTO’ or ‘I will only buy XTRONS’, even ‘Pumpkin is well liked’. But all of these brand names have branded hardware that is now outdated and not up to current standards. Pumpkin are still selling windowsCE based devices, that OS died years ago. This just goes to prove that the brand name of an android headunit is not the best way to decide your purchase.
All of the android headunits started off ‘unbranded’.
To spot an android headunit that will be suitable for you, one that has enough technology to use the apps of today and then the apps of tomorrow: look at the specifications. Then also read the online reviews of that product, whether it is Amazon, eBay or AliExpress, read the reviews. Don’t just look at the percentage feedback or the stars, read the relevant reviews. This is particularly important if you are buying a custom fit android headunit for a specific vehicle. The fascia need to be of acceptable quality and the CAN BUS adaptor needs to be compatible with your vehicle make, model and year.
What is a good spec for an android headunit?
Current apps run well if the android has 4Gb RAM, having 6Gb RAM means it will be more ‘future proof’ as apps of tomorrow need more and more RAM to run. The apps are the same apps that android phones use, to the advancement in phone technology pushes the apps forward and your android headunit will need to keep up. Processors with many cores and higher clock rates while processing more work in each cycle are also an advancing technology. Having four cores from 2014 vintage just won’t run the latest apps, or even later versions of android very well at all. Look for an Android headunit that has 8 cores (octacore) or 6 cores (hexacore) they could be called the PX6 processor or the UIS7862 processor, either way the multi-high speed cores will run more like a modern phone and less like a phone from 2013.
Other features that could be important to you are a DSP the Digital Signal Processor to alter the sound stage, or RGB features to customise the look of you android headunit in the dashboard.
None of the features or specifications are in any way, brand specific. So basing your choice for the best android headunit on just a brand name may not give you the best value or even give you what you want.
What about these brands…
Sony, Pioneer, JVC and Alpine?
All of these brands own their factories and produce their own their own headunit, but none of them are android headunits, they are only android auto units, don’t confuse the two.