Chinese electronics company Anker announces a Navdy clone named "Roav"
【Summary】Chinese consumer electronics company Anker is about to release its automotive brand “Roav” this coming November, which is very similar to Navdy, but might come with an affordable price.
By Claire Peng
Are you tired of lowering your head checking GPS directions on your phone while driving, or fumbling to read your text messages when waiting for a red light to turn green? What if there's a gadget that can connect to your phone and project the phone screen onto your car dashboard? Well, Navdy has been delving into this issue since 2014. Now, a Chinese competitor is jumping in to provide a very similar product named "Roav", and it will probably feature a more affordable price.
The Chinese consumer electronics company Anker is about to release its automotive brand "Roav" this coming November. It will feature the Roav Dashtop as its flagship product. Like Navdy, it can connect a driver's smartphone and display relevant information such as gas levels, navigation details, caller information and traffic information. Moreover, the device also connects to dashboard and rear cameras, which will alert driver concerning physical ojects around the vehicle.
Currently, the Navdy head-up display costs $499, with an introductory price of $299 for preorders. Although Anker does not release further details on Roav Dashtop's price. Judging from the pricing scale of their previous products, it probably will be very affordable.
Anker was founded in 2011 by Steven Yang, a Chinese ex-Google engineer who returned to his mother country and built up his own venture in Changsha, Hunan province. By opening the store on Ebay and Amazon, he began selling mobile chargers and other accessories to international customers, and gradually made the business grow. Within just two years, Anker's sales revenue exceeded 100 million rmb annually (around 15 million US dollars), and increased 50% compared with the first year. Now its products are used by 24 million customers, and have major markets in North America, Japan and Europe.
"Made-in-China products are always tagged with cheap price and lower quality. And that's why I wanted to start my own company and bring the good Chinese products to international customers. I've been living in United States for years, and gets familiar with US customers' shopping habits—if a product has good design, great user experience and also a very affordable price, people are surely drawn to it and there lies in huge business potential," said Yang when interviewed by a local newspaper in China.
Although Yang's company was founded in China, "Anker" is an internationally registered brand. The company now cooperates with a US company, replying on its warehouse and logistics networks to ship Anker products faster to US customers. This can take between 1-3 business days.
Regarding the new Navdy clone product "Roav", Anker says shortly before the release in November, the company will make an official announcement including a complete list of product details and specifications. It seems like Roav can be a threat to Navdy in terms of price competition, but whether its quality is equally competitive needs to wait for its launch day.
Claire Peng has over 6 years of professional experience in the media industry, covering TV, newspaper and online media. She was once a reporter and producer for Fairchild Television based in Toronto Canada, and worked as an English news reporter for the Global Times in Beijing. She writes mainly about self-driving, companies investment, and the enterprise lab.
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