CarPlay and Android Auto are Apple and Google’s first attempts to slowly invade the automobile, but finding a car that supports them hasn’t been easy the past year. If you’ve been curious what it’s like to drive around with either system, the folks at Consumer Reports put the two systems head-to-head during a morning drive to get coffee.
Each interface has its promises, but the report also highlights a lot of areas that need to be worked on — like how you can’t change your car’s FM radio while using Apple Maps. Unlike your car system though, CarPlay and Android Auto will probably be upgraded every year, giving you new features each year, just like your smartphone
Here’s what it’s like to ride with CarPlay and Android :
Don’t expect pure CarPlay in Ford vehicles anytime soon. Photo: Apple
Apple’s CarPlay and Google’s Android Auto are the two hottest options right now for car infotainment systems, but if you’re hoping that Ford will give you a pure CarPlay experience in one of their upcoming vehicles, you might as well keep on waiting for the mythical Apple Car.
Ford currently supports both CarPlay and Android in a limited capacity, but for now its CEO says the company will only allow the two systems to serve as secondary interfaces to its primary navigation system, SYNC.
The first vehicles to support Apple’s CarPlay infotainment system are just starting to roll off the assembly lines, but within five years CarPlay could be the most popular car platform in the world, with over 24 million cars sporting Cupertino’s dashboard system.
Despite being in its infancy, a host of auto manufacturers from Audio to Volvo are partnering with Apple on CarPLay, and ABI Research estimates that more vehicles will use CarPlay by 2019 than MirrorLink, the #1 open source solution that integrates popular smartphone apps with your vehicle’s dashboard.
The competition between iOS and Android is coming to your car. The recently announced Android Auto is Google’s answer to Apple’s CarPlay, and the two platforms offer similar features, with each promising to seamlessly connect smartphones to automobiles’ in-dash monitors.
As you might expect, though, there are some key differences between CarPlay and Android Auto beyond the type of phones with which they work. In today’s video, we take a look at the many features of the competing platforms, as well as the automakers who are partnering with Apple and Google, to help you decide which will be the best fit for you.