Published on August 9th, 2015 | by Guest


Introducing Android Auto and Apple CarPlay

Are you ready for your smartphone to connect with your not-so-smart car? With the power of Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, you can turn your family vehicle’s touchscreen into app central, giving you both touch and hands-free access to a portfolio of software that you’ll find useful while traveling. If you need something on the road, there’s probably an app for that.

With Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, you connect your mobile device to your vehicle. Then, the touchscreen on your dashboard acts as your user interface for the auto-related app (or apps) that you’re using. Many apps are designed with an emphasis on audio output so drivers aren’t distracted from the road while using them. Other apps should be used when the car isn’t moving.

Speaking of less distraction, you’ll find that many aspects of the integration are voice-activated. That means that you can just tell your car what to do, and it will use the integration between the smartphone and the vehicle to respond accordingly. Welcome to the future.

Apps on the Go

The most obvious application for these technologies is as a navigation system. You could have a navigation system built directly into your car, but why is that necessary when your smartphone is already equipped with a great navigation application? Thanks to Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, you can integrate your mobile device with your vehicle and receive directions to your next destination.

Also, get ready for mobile technology to send the embedded car stereo to the antique store. You’ll no longer need a radio in the dashboard when you can simply integrate your smartphone to the vehicle. Since your mobile device already has all of your favorite music on it, you can just voice-activate the vehicle to play the songs you want to hear.

Beyond that, there are also apps specifically designed for music enthusiasts. On the Android Auto side of the house, you can install TuneIn Radio and Slacker Radio. On the Apple CarPlay side, you’ll have access to Apple Music. Both vendors support Spotify and iHeartRadio.

But wait, there’s more. There are apps that play podcasts, check the weather, play audio books, report the news and more. App designers are noticing there’s a growing market for apps that can be useful to people while on the road, and they are producing them accordingly.

Getting on Board

Car manufacturers that don’t want to get left behind in a competitive environment are ensuring that new vehicles support integration with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. That’s why both Volkswagen of America and Honda announced that certain 2016 models will integrate with both technologies.

John Mendel is the Executive Vice President of American Honda Motor Company’s Automobiles Division. He said in a statement, “Customers want their vehicles to be more intelligently integrated with their smartphone-powered lives, and we are committed to delivering that experience.”

In the case of Honda, the car will include a 7-inch touchscreen, dubbed an “infotainment system” by both the car company and the smartphone vendors. The car will also accept voice commands.

Moving On

This advancement in vehicle technology inspires a couple questions: What’s next, and how will vehicles evolve beyond smartphone integration? There are already self-driving cars, so it’s worth asking if there will one day be an app that drives your car for you. You could end up becoming a passenger in your own car, even if you’re sitting in the driver’s seat.

That remains to be seen. For now, prepare to go shopping for your next new car with your smartphone in hand so you can test the connection.

android and apple radios

Image by SplitShire


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Kayla Matthews is an IT journalist and blogger who edits Follow her on Facebook and Twitter to read her latest posts!

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