Smartphones move center stage in cars and personal drones

EETimes – Parrot, is a “universal receiver” that can link with any mobile phone. Parrot, based here, has developed what Seydoux describes as “a counterpart to a smartphone” that enhances voice quality for hands-free car phones while improving audio acoustics. A voice recognition feature provides access to the smartphone’s address book.

Parrot’s AR.Drone 2.0 captures photos and video via on-board HD camera offers live recording and streaming via Wi-Fi and can even execute 360-degree roll by simply hitting a button or by tilting a smartphone or tablet. Seydoux calls Parrot’s toy drones “a new frontier for video games.”

In July, Parrot acquired SenseFly, a Switzerland-based drone company, allowing the French company to enter the ultra-light flying drone market for professional applications like mapping.

Meanwhile, Parrot also has developed a wireless headset featuring Bluetooth connectivity, active noise cancellation and near-field communications for Bluetooth pairing. Jawbone sensors allow the headset to be used for wireless conversations.

Parrot is now targeting markets beyond the phone and drones.
Last year, it acquired DiBcom, a French mobile TV chip company. Designing a system that works well with a smartphone is a priority for Parrot’s in-car system, but the company is willing to add features to regular handsets, including mobile TV, said Yannick Levy, a former DiBcom CEO and now executive vice president of Parrot’s digital tuner business unit.

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