There are some WindowsCE (WinCE) windows Embedded Compact based car head units out there. With very similar looks and features, these car stereos can often be confused with an android headunits but they are very different devices.
Windows CE can’t run android apps, it doesn’t run android but it may be interesting to know what MCU processor and how much RAM they have fitted. We took a look at one of the WinCE headunits to see what made it tick.
The RAM listed for the WinCE car stereo is 256Mb. That is a quarter of a 1Gb (a quarter of a gigabyte). This may seem impossible, but windows CE needs less RAM to run its apps. It is fair to say that Android is very RAM hungry and current android headunits need 4Gb to run smoothly.
You can’t upgrade the RAM in a WinCE headunit. You are very limited in what it can do. As you can see in the 256Mb RAM that it can never be converted to run android because of the total lack of RAM.
A typical WinCE – Windows CE headunit processor is the MTK3360. This runs at 800Mhz. With even the really poor 8227L running at over 1.2Ghz, it just shows how under-powered (by android standards) they are. WinCE doesn’t need as fast a processor as android does. But android is much more advanced and more modern, so this is expected. But it also goes to show that the wince headunit can’t run android because the processor is not up to running android.
The MTK3360 is a 2 core (Dual Core) processor. This is very old technology. Even the worst android headunits use a 4 core (Quad core) processor. This may be enough to run a very old operating system of windows CE, but it can’t run android. This is yet another reason that a WinCE headunit couldn’t be adapted or flashed to run android. The hardware is just not powerful enough to run android, let alone running any android apps.
WinCE is Windows CE, an old and obsolete operating system. There are no new apps for WinCE because it has been abandoned by Microsoft. No new apps for wince, no updates and it can’t be upgraded or flashed to run android. Be very wary of buying a wince car stereo. It may not do the apps that you think it will.