Vinli is a platform with nearly 50 applications, which connect to cars through a 4G Vinli device plugged into a car’s data port and is powered by T-Mobile data. The device is compatible with all cars made since 1996, and drivers and passengers can also connect to the device’s WiFi hotspot for personal use.
Vinli will now be offered on cars sold by the 40,000 dealers in the Cox Automotive network, and will also be part of subscription packages for individual consumers and fleet services through Meineke’s automotive service locations.
Vinli founder and CEO Mark Haidar says this marks a huge step forward for the young company, who only released Vinli 10 months ago.
“We’re moving from being a retail product, a gadget that you would go and buy from Best Buy or Amazon, to a product that is part of the automotive ecosystem,” Haidar said.
In the coming years, the company would like to partner with automotive makers and include the Vinli platform in every new car that hits the street, he said.
Haidar also said that the company’s relationship with Bellevue, Wash., based T-Mobile has evolved from a client-provider relationship to an ongoing partnership, as the companies work to bring more mobile connectivity to car users.
Apps on Vinli’s platform serve a range of uses, including helping drivers decode warning lights and reminding car owners when they need to make routine checkups.
Vinli also has an Amazon Alexa skill, and dozens of other applications for car owners. Vinli employs 60 core staffers at its Dallas headquarters.