Parrot RNB6: How a civil drone manufacturer’s infotainment system conquered CES

Welcome to the next level of in-car connectivity.

French electronics manufacturer Parrot has unveiled its RNB6 head unit at the 2015 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES), and it looks to be a bit of a game changer.

The RNB6 is like the Boot Camp of car infotainment, only better. The device can switch between Android Auto and Apple CarPlay with the push of a button, which should prove invaluable for family vehicles, one-car households, and even road trips.

Parrot, who also manufactures civil drones and headphones, says the RNB6 is due out later in 2015 with an undeniably impressive list of features: Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Siri Eyes Free, Android Auto Voice, and Hands-Free Telephony.

The receiver can also tap into the car’s in-car network and GPS to provide simplified navigation, acting more like a modern smartphone than the clunky, overly complicated head units that flood the market today. Most functions can be routed through the vehicle’s steering wheel controls.

Parrot RNB6

But that’s not all.

The RBN6 also equips a 4x55W audio amplifier, digital tuner, plugs for Ethernet, OBD2, and HDMI, as well as connectivity for the included high-definition dashcam. The damn thing even has rear camera park assist … and climate control functionality.

With its multitude of options, impressive connectivity, and simplified design, it’s no surprise that the product was received well at CES. In fact, the RNB6 won the event’s ‘In-Vehicle Audio/Video Best Of Innovation Award’ and the ‘In-Vehicle Accessories/Control/Navigation Innovation Award.’

Pricing for the RNB6 hasn’t been released yet, but given how capable the machine is, we’re just hoping it won’t take a second car loan to buy one. The RNB6 will reportedly fit any 2-DIN application.