It's Apple and Google Again: CarPlay Is on its Way While an Android Car Is in the Making

By @judithaparri on
A woman touches the display inside a Volvo car during the media day ahead of the 84th Geneva Motor Show at the Palexpo Arena in Geneva March 4, 2014. Apple makes its next move in hands-free smartphone technology for car drivers when it unveils a new, integrated iPhone voice-control system at the Geneva Motor Show this week. The U.S. company's CarPlay makes its debut in Ferrari, Mercedes-Benz and Volvo vehicles at the show, demonstrating the software system that allows drivers to control their iPhones via touch and voice, Apple said on Monday. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann

In 2012, radio advertisement in the U.S. topped $16 billion. The advent of digital electronics and cable TV put the radio into a thriving profitable business. Radios are always associated in the automotive industry since if they are not in the car, it will be just a small fraction of its current size, or would not exist at all.

The challenge is to make sure drivers log in to their cars.

However, this is more difficult as people already have a powerful computer in their pockets. Why need to log into the car? Detroit offers drivers an enhanced and integrated experience so compelling that logging becomes a requirement. Connected drivers are given by carmakers the chance to interact with others in a lot of ways like radio, audio, video, games, GPS, social networks, email, text, apps, etc.  

Then comes iOS 7, Apple's most recent version of mobile operating system. CarPlay is iOS 7 on the dashboard. Apple designed CarPlay to offer drivers an experience using their iPhone in the car.

How it Works

There are many ways to control CarPlay. Compatible cars will have a voice-control button on the steering wheel. According to Apple, "if it controls your screen, it controls CarPlay." You will be able to use dials, touch and physical knobs to interact with your iPhone.

Siri is in the entire system because with voice commands and prompts, CarPlay provides and "eyes-free" experience to answer calls, send texts and listen to music. CarPlay also supposedly knows where you are heading to, based on addresses in your email, contacts, calendars or texts.

Apple Maps and Car Support

CarPlay features Maps, which had a rocky start but already improved. More and more people use Apple Maps which helps create better map experience for everyone that tried it.

The pioneers of using CarPlay are Ferrari, Volvo and Mercedes-Benz, all of which were on the motor show in Geneva last week. Nissan, General Motors and BMW promised to integrate CarPlay into future vehicles too. From these car makers you can grab CarPlay in the cars.

Apple is not the first to unveil system for cars. OS rival Google and Audi are in the works for an Android system car. The two titans Apple and Google are top players in the smartphone world. Apple in mobile device sales and Google for the most mobile OS used. Now, both are eyeing to conquer the automotive industry. 

And the car wars begin...

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