Anker’s Roav VIVA adds Alexa to your Bluetooth enabled car

Anker is joining the in-car Alexa market with their new Roav VIVA. It’s a 2-port USB charger for your car that comes with a pair of far-field microphones and built-in Alexa. Much like the Garmin Speak and Muse, it’s another way to add Alexa to your car, but there are a few caveats.

Roav is Anker’s car brand, much like Eufy is their brand for home gadgets. Tha brand has mostly produced car dash cams, but the VIVA is their first really compelling product.

The Roav VIVA plugs into a standard 12 volt socket in your car and provides a pair of USB ports for powering your various mobile devices. Its “PowerIQ” and “VoltageBoost” technology claims to charge devices faster than other car power adapters by detecting the connected device.

But you’re not buying it for the ports. you’re buying it for Alexa. Like all of these in-car Alexa devices, the Roav VIVA connects to your phone via their app and uses your phones data connection to access Alexa. This gives you nearly all of the Alexa capabilities you’re used to at home through an Echo product, but on the road.

The VIVA has a pair of far-field microphones that give it hands-free access to Alexa. Just speak your request and Alexa will respond without needing to touch anything. The top of the device acts as a mute button if you want to mute the microphones and keep them from listening.

The catch with the Roav VIVA is that it only connects to your car stereo over Bluetooth. Other similar devices often give you the option to use a 3.5mm auxiliary jack, but not the VIVA. Additionally, your car’s Bluetooth capabilities are going to need to be fairly modern for the VIVA to work. If your car was built within the 2010s, you’re probably fine, but Roav has a large list of incompatible cars at the bottom of their Amazon product page.

The Roav VIVA is available to order today for $49.99. It will begin shipping at the end of this month.

  1. Ray says:

    Cool, glad to see more competition in this market, which will hopefully keep the price down.

    For Christmas, I picked up a couple of the Muse units that I discovered here on AFTV News. The Muse is pretty darn cool! It feels a little like a first-version product in that it’s a little glitchy, especially with my older iPhone 5s, but it behaves better on my wife’s iPhone 6. We have a great time on road trips taking turns requesting songs (via Amazon Music Unlimited). You can do pretty much anything you can do with an Alexa in your house. I even amazed my son by turning on my Rachio-controlled sprinklers while sitting in the truck in the driveway. :D

    Personally, the Bluetooth-only aspect of the Roav VIVA isn’t much of an issue. It’s how I’ve got my Muse hooked up. In fact, I’m a bit annoyed by the extra hard-wired USB cable the Muse comes with — just more clutter if you’re using Bluetooth anyway.

  2. Trey Kyle says:

    Do they have any for sale at their booth?

  3. Richard says:

    Am I missing something? My phone does all this already. Does it need its own data connection or does it just use the phones? I can already pair my phone with my phone with my head unit. I just don’t see the utility.

    • Ray says:

      It doesn’t just pair your phone to your radio’s head unit, it acts as an Amazon Echo or Echo Dot — adding voice controlled audio to your car. Say, “Alexa, play Marketplace” and NPR’s Kai Ryssdal is streaming through your speakers. Or “Alexa, play ‘Hypnotized’ by Fleetwood Mac” and music fills your vehicle. All hands-free. It’s a lot of fun and much safer than futzing with your radio dial or your smartphone while driving down the road.

  4. jimberkas says:

    hey, can’t be any worse than the Muse, right??
    My car doesn’t even have bluetooth, so this is no good for me.

    • Bob says:

      i bought 2 MUSE devices. They are awful. So many issues and hands free calling is NOT supported, no spotify, and no drop in features. It powers up and connects only sometimes. Poor setup

  5. Brad says:

    The Roav VIVA page states “290 components enable
    complete Alexa support, Bluetooth connectivity, FM transmission, and noise-reduction technologies.” so maybe it can connect to your car through Bluetooth or by tuning to a specific FM channel. Or maybe it connects to your car exclusively through FM and the Bluetooth is to connect to your phone.

    • Brad says:

      After a Google search I was able to find a copy of the user manual (I think it came from an FCC filing) and it states that there are two ways to connect the VIVA to your car, either through your vehicle’s built-in Bluetooth or through FM transmission. It also notes that if you choose the Bluetooth mode then the hands-free calling feature is not available.

  6. manu says:

    if you got the Alexa app in your smartphone , what is the use ?

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