Jak streams audio over Wi-Fi into your car

Smartphone accessory maker BCoda showed Jak at CES 2013, a USB dongle representing an emerging category of tech: a Wi-Fi dongle designed to stream media.

Jak
Jak is a Wi-Fi dongle that plugs into a USB port and streams content. BCoda

LAS VEGAS--A new means of streaming audio and video from an Android or iOS device showed up at CES 2013 in the form of Jak, a USB dongle that can plug into a car or home stereo, game console, or TV.

Jak is small, the size of a typical USB drive, but can support up to 20 devices through Wi-Fi. WEP and WPA security are built in. The Wi-Fi connection allows for music played at high-bit-rate MP3 quality or video at HD 1080p.

Jak requires an app installed on the connecting device. The app, available for Android and iOS, sets up the Wi-Fi connection, letting the user enter a password for Jak's network.

To stream content from a device through Jak, the user will need to organize it into a playlist with the app. When Jak is plugged into a USB port in a car, for example, the stereo will see it as a USB drive, and be able to play the music in the playlist. A driver will be able to change devices on the fly by switching playlists through the car stereo's interface.

Jak will not support advanced controls, such as browsing a connected device's music library from a stereo.

Plugged into a TV or PC, Jak can stream video, photos, or documents to the screen. However, the content must first be selected using the Jak app on the device.

Jak will be sold through DriveNTalk, the manufacturer's U.S. trademark and Web site. Pricing has not been announced.

About the author

Wayne Cunningham reviews cars and writes about automotive technology for CNET. Prior to the Car Tech beat, he covered spyware, Web building technologies, and computer hardware. He began covering technology and the Web in 1994 as an editor of The Net magazine. He's also the author of "Vaporware," a novel that's available as a Nook e-book.

 

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