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December Issue Feature: Behind The Scenes - Rydeen Mobile Electronics

12-14-2016, Mobile Electronics -- As the mobile electronics industry evolves, 12-volt manufacturers and retailers are constantly addressing the product categories that are most effective, those that are underperforming, and most importantly, the ones which represent where the business is headed.

None of that is lost on Bob Goodman, Director of Sales and Marketing, for Torrance, Calif.-based Rydeen Mobile Electronics, an aftermarket manufacturer that counts vehicle safety and convenience products among its core competencies.

“One of the challenges the 12-volt industry is facing is that we’re getting away from speakers and amplifiers, something we’ve been doing for 40-plus years,” Goodman said. “These days, the challenges of driver safety are becoming far more critical. If you make a mistake on the road or while driving, you could lose lives. If someone’s radio doesn’t work correctly, no one dies. It’s important that we get this right the first time—not the second time.”

Goodman, who considers himself an ambassador of sorts for the vehicle safety category, is trying to get the word out about its importance—not just to retailers, but to the industry as a whole. He may have more of a chance to do that, now that he’s been recently elected to the Vehicle Technology Division board of the Consumer Technology Association (CTA). Its key initiatives are to raise consumer awareness of automotive technologies and installation, and to serve as a leading voice on safe driving and vehicle-related legislative and regulatory issues.

“The challenge for us as a manufacturer is to create awareness within the category,” Goodman said. “The 12-volt retailers have not globally embraced this category, but they are starting to get it.”

In 2015, more than 38,000 people died in motor vehicle crashes, according to the National Safety Council. According to the Council’s annual report on unintentional injuries, the three biggest causes of fatalities on the road included alcohol (30.8 percent), speeding (30 percent), and distracted driving (26 percent).

All of the new technology in vehicles is causing more driver distraction behind the wheel than ever before, but part of it stems from the fact that 53 percent of drivers believe if manufacturers have loaded all this entertainment into their cars, then it must be safe.

Enhancing car security systems for occupants as well as pedestrians has become a greater priority for automakers worldwide. It also presents tremendous potential for aftermarket manufacturers.

 “We have shored up our resources and we’re adding new products that will get traction with consumers,” Goodman said.

Blind Sight

At the Specialty Equipment Manufacturers Association (SEMA) show held last month, Rydeen showcased four new products—three of which represented new product categories for the company.

One of the key introductions, according to Goodman, is the BSS1, the Blind Spot Detection System, with an MSRP of $599. “We have been selling side cameras as a solution for the blind spot issue, but we came up with an alternative in terms of sensors,” he said.

For the most part, Goodman explained, vendors use ultrasonic sensors for these types of blind spot devices that are similar to what is used for parking sensors. It has been the only alternative, until recently.

“Now we’re starting to see more microwave radar systems, which are far more accurate and easier to install for the 12-volt specialty retailer,” Goodman said. Rydeen’s new system employs microwave technology to warn drivers of any vehicles within their blind zones and, Goodman added, is more accurate than competitors’ systems employing ultrasonic sensors. The two compact microwave sensors mount behind the bumper, eliminating drilling into the bumper of the vehicle. Alerts are displayed with mini LED icons on each A pillar and a buzzer mounted behind or under the dashboard.

With installation being less complicated, it may open up more opportunities for the category. “In talking to installers and retailers over the last two to three years, blind spot detection is one of those things that the OE has offered on higher-end vehicles and parts of technology packages,” Goodman said. “The consumer is aware of it and has asked about it, yet many retailers we’ve spoken to have shied away from it because it required drilling into the vehicle. First of all, that can be time consuming, but the other issue was, if the consumer didn’t like the result, if their expectations and what the product actually delivered were not in sync, then they had an issue that there were holes in their vehicle that had to be addressed.”

Read the rest of the article HERE.

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