Volvo is one of the first carmakers to endorse Apple’s CarPlay technology, which seamlessly pairs the iPhone with a vehicle’s infotainment system.
Apple unveiled CarPlay at the Geneva motor show, saying that Volvo, Ferrari and Mercedes-Benz would immediately introduce the system.
Others hopping on the CarPlay bandwagon include BMW, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Hyundai, Jaguar Land Rover, Kia, Mitsubishi, Nissan, PSA Peugeot Citroen, Subaru, Suzuki, and Toyota.
CarPlay takes control of the car’s screen and allows drivers to use the iPhone’s functions. (In the Volvo video here, it also handles the climate control and seat heating systems).
The big advantage of CarPlay is that carmakers no longer have to keep updating their infotainment systems to stay ahead of the competition – Apple will do that for them with each new iOS (operating system) release.
Apple is providing access to all the best features of iOS, controlled by voice and, depending on your car, the touchscreen or control knob.
The user interface will be familiar to iOS users, with reworked versions of Maps, Podcasts, Messaging, and Music developed for the car’s screen.
CarPlay is available as an update to iOS 7 and works with Lightning-enabled iPhones, including iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c and iPhone 5.
CarPlay offers: Navigation: AppleMaps, with calendar, contacts, email and messages integration, plus point of interest searches and real-time traffic. Apps: Music, Podcasts, Beats Radio, iHeartRadio, Spotify, Slacker. Messaging: Messages with listening and dictating. Phone: Native interface to make and return calls. Voice: Siri control of Maps, Phone, Messaging, and Apps. Controls: Touchscreen, knobs, or voice.