Smartphones have become a major part of our everyday life and most people are finding themselves using them in their car. This presents a huge problem because it isn’t safe and recent studies have shown it’s more dangerous than driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Fortunately for these drivers, smartphone and car manufacturers are trying to find solutions that allow consumers to use their devices while keeping them safe behind the wheel.
Earlier this year, Android announced its Open Automotive Alliance (OAA) platform which aims to bring its mobile operating system to vehicles. This initiative is a group of leading automakers and technology companies which strive to turn your car into the ultimate mobile computer by creating a seamless OS between your car and phone.
Unlike the OAA which is creating an open development model and common platform for developers, CarPlay embeds most of the iPhone’s already popular features into your car’s built-in display. According to Apple, all users will need to do is plug in their iPhone to their car and they will be ready get directions, make calls, send and receive messages, and listen to music without taking their eyes off the road.
CarPlay will take advantage of Siri voice control and adapt to different driving scenarios. It will also work with all the car’s controls including knobs, buttons, and touchscreen. The five major iOS apps that will support CarPlay are Maps, Phone, Music, Podcasts, and Messages. All these apps will be voice-activated and allow the driver to use them while staying focused on driving. CarPlay will also support Beats Music, iHeartRadio, Spotify, and Stitcher. Support for more apps is coming soon.
CarPlay will be compatible with all iPhone 5 models and be available on select new cars starting in 2014. Ferrari, Honda, Hyundai, Jaguar, Mercedes-Benz, and Volvo will all release vehicles with CarPlay later this year. Apple has also partnered with BMW, Chevrolet, Ford, KIA, Land Rover, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Opel, Peugeot, Subaru, Suzuki, and Toyota to release future CarPlay vehicles.
Apple has connected with just about every major car manufacturer on this project and may have found a solution to making the roads safer in a modern world. And because the apps aren’t redesigned, anyone who is familiar with iOS will find CarPlay to be intuitive.
For those interested in this new technology, take a look at the video below which features Volvo showcasing CarPlay at the Geneva Motor Show.