Carplay will use Siri and the familiar iPhone feel to replace the car stereo—and just about everything else in your car.
We remember the days when the stereo head unit was the centerpiece of any dashboard, along with ground effects and engine upgrades (whistletips didn’t have the staying power we would have hoped). Now, the smartphone has reduced our dashboard requirements to a simple auxiliary jack. Our phones do everything, and they do it well.
Characteristically, Apple is the tip of the spear when it comes to this tidal shift. They’re working with automakers to deliver Carplay, an interface that combines better touchscreen tech and a little helper named Siri to deliver the most essential functions of a mobile phone, like maps and music, directly to your dashboard.
Carplay will likely revolutionize car stereos in much the same way the iPhone reinvented cell phones nearly a decade ago. Look at in-car touchscreens today. If the confusing interface doesn't remind you of pre-iOS, pre-Android phones, you also probably aren’t old enough to drive. Siri’s voice recognition capabilities and the simplicity of iPhone’s user interface will keep your eyes on the road.
Carplay will debut this summer in Ferrari, Mercedes, Honda, Volvo and Hyundai. Fifteen others, including BMW, Ford, Nissan and Toyota, are committed to follow suit shortly after. Aftermarket partnerships with Pioneer and Alpine also mean you won’t have to buy a new Ferrari to get access to a Carplay stereo.
Mentally prepare yourself for a future where jacking your iPhone into your car becomes as integral to driving as hitting the throttle. Carplay is just the first step in Apple’s plan to maneuver their way into your garage. Seriously, if there’s not an Apple branded wifi router called the Carport, specifically made for you to sync your car while it’s parked in your garage, we’ll consider that a major opportunity missed.
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