While other car companies are making their autos iPod-ready, Mazda is taking a different approach. They have inked a partnership with PhatNoise and will soon begin offering the PhatBox Digital Media Player as a dealer-installed accessory in all Mazda vehicles.
The PhatBox Digital Media Player integrates seamlessly with existing Mazda sound systems and will provide drivers with hundreds of hours of music without having to search through compact discs or flip radio stations. The PhatBox can be trunk-mounted and stores music on a removable 20-gigabyte hard drive that can be transferred between multiple PhatBox units.
The system is controlled by the existing CD changer controls on all Mazda radios, with an interface designed to make finding music simple. Using the radio panel screen, PhatBox displays artist and disc titles, and, for factory radios on the MAZDA3, MAZDA6, Miata, and RX-8, offers voice-assisted browsing with an SSA (Simple Stereo Architecture)/Voice interface. This device allows drivers to utilize voice command music selection for close to 3,500 song titles without ever taking their hands off the wheel.
No pricing or when it will be available, but if you’re driving a Mazda, it might be a cool option… of course, if the price is right.