Apple CarPlay At The 2015 LA Auto Show

The annual LA Auto Show includes the introduction of entirely new models as well as new model year installments of existing vehicles. When it comes to new cars, and Apple’N’Apps, it’s all about Apple CarPlay. We have gone to the LA Auto Show the past few years looking for Apple CarPlay, and not finding much. 2014 showed the first signs, so we had hopes for 2015 to be the breakout year for Apple CarPlay at the LA Auto Show. Like in year’s past, we headed to the booth of every manufacturer Apple has listed as a CarPlay partner, and try to find someone knowledgeable on CarPlay.
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In 2014, most companies told us something similar in that, “We’re working with Apple, but we don’t have timing, or products to announce”. 2015 is different with most manufacturers having detailed plans for Apple CarPlay. Chevrolet was the leader, as they had a section dedicated to interactive Apple CarPlay demos, and they are claiming to have more Apple CarPlay enabled cars than any other brand with all 2016 models supporting CarPlay. Hyundai was the first last year, and they continued their effort this year. VW is also planning to have all of their 2016 models supports Apple CarPlay, and we went hands on with their demo unit, included in the video below. Kia is set to have all of their new cars gain CarPlay support in Q2 of 2016, and Ford is planning a similar time frame and brand wide support for when Sync 3.0 launches with CarPlay support.

As you go down the list of partners Apple claims, there is less and less support. Honda does already have CarPlay in all Civics and the Accord EX and up. Audi has CarPlay coming to the Q7, and will continue the roll out. Porsche, Chrysler (Fiat, Jeep, Dodge), and BMW have plans for CarPlay, but nothing specific at the moment. Nissan and Mercedes Benz have plans to launch CarPlay support for the 2017 model year. Then, there’s Toyota, Lexus, and Infinity that said they don’t have CarPlay support, and have no current plans to include CarPlay.
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Through it all, the big takeaway was that CarPlay has officially arrived to the point that if you’re shopping for a new car in 2016, there’s a good chance that the car will support CarPlay. The system itself provides an Apple stylized interface made for an in car display. Your iPhone content is mirrored to your in-car dash, but with an interface made to be used while driving. There is support for third party apps with most being audio only. The CarPlay system also includes an app of the manufacturer that you can tap to go back to the manufacturer’s in-car system. You can stream content from iOS in most cars with Bluetooth, but CarPlay actually properly displays the content and gives access to Apple apps like Maps, Messages, and Music to have more control and information.

Apple CarPlay is nice to have, though it’s not a deciding factor when purchasing something that is tens of thousands of dollars.


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