CarPlay isn’t coming to Toyota after all. Photo: Apple
Toyota was one of the first car manufacturers to announce it would support CarPlay, but the company is pulling back on its plans to embrace Apple’s car infotainment system. Despite still being listed among Apple’s CarPlay partners, Toyota says it’s sticking with its own Entune systems.
The company says that while it has talked frequently to both Apple and Google about CarPlay and Android Auto, it has no plans to bring the technologies to its cars in the United States anytime soon. Toyota’s manager of advanced technology communications, John Hanson, told the New York Times, “We may all eventually wind up there, but right now we prefer to use our in-house proprietary platforms for those kinds of functions,” Mr. Hanson said.
While Toyota’s not so hot on CarPlay, other manufacturers like Ford, BMW, Volkswagon, and GM are more bullish on Apple’s car offerings. Here’s a full breakdown of which service auto makers currently support:
One of the designers in Apple’s Industrial Design Group helped create this shape-shifting fabric-covered car for BMW. Photo: BMW
As rumors that Apple is making a self-driving car rev up, a peek under the hood of the company’s famed Industrial Design studio reveals a crew of talented automobile designers.
An interest in futuristic cars is embedded deep within the DNA of Apple’s vaunted design team. Working under Jony Ive, Apple employs designers who worked on several fantastic concept cars, including a fabric-covered BMW that shifts shape depending on speed.
Ive has long been obsessed by cars. (He has quite a stable.) As a teenager, Ive wanted to be a car designer. He visited a U.K. design school that specialized in automotives with a view to studying there, but he found the other students too weird. They were making “vroom vroom” noises as they sketched. Instead, he went to Newcastle Polytechnic (which has since been renamed Northumbria University).
A look at other key members of Apple’s design team, and at a super-secret research-and-development facility planned for the company’s new campus, offers a few clues about how Cupertino might go about producing innovative and unconventional cars.
This time on The CultCast: we’re live from Las Vegas and ready to report the best and worst tech from the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show! We’ll call out some of our favorite Apple accessories too, and some will surprise you. Plus, did you hear about the Michael Bay meltdown at the Samsung keynote? Well we were in the room when things got weird… let us regale you with the whole story.
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Glympse is a clever — and potentially lifesaving — feature that we’d love to see in more smartphone-connected cars.
It started out as a free app that can broadcast the user’s location to selected contacts, Facebook friends or Twitter followers. But it’s become a valuable tool for drivers of smartphone-connected Fords and Merecedes-Benzes, allowing them to broadcast their location without taking their hands off the steering wheel.
Now BMW and Mini have partnered with Glympse, raising the marque total to four.
Thanks to some inspiration from the Apple Store, BMW has decided that starting in 2014 they will require all dealers to hire young tech-savvy employees to handle questions from customers about the vehicles on the showroom floor. They’ll even be equipped with iPads and be called Geniuses.
Stitcher Radio for iOS has today been updated to add a nifty new “Topic Search” feature that helps listeners discover trending topics across more than 15,000 shows. The update also brings better episode management, improved Voiceover mode, performance improvements, and more.
Hyundai is set to showcase a number of new vehicles at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this week, and the company has announced that they’ll all include Siri Eyes Free technology. The feature allows iPhone owners to perform a whole host of tasks using the intelligent assistant — such as taking calls or creating Reminders — without taking their hands off the wheel.
GM finally makes it safe to use Siri at the wheel.
General Motors has announced that its upcoming Chevrolets will be the world’s first cars to offer “Eyes Free” Siri integration, allowing drivers to use the voice control capabilities of their iPhone without taking their hands off the wheel. The feature will be integrated into GM’s MyLink infotainment system.
If it weren’t for Apple, this car would probably look awful to you.
Steve Jobs never got the chance to build the car of his dreams, but he has still had a huge affect on the car industry. Why? Because he made white cool. Before Apple began making white computers and accessories, white was a color only associated with boring products like refrigerators — and nobody dreamed of owning a white car. Now it’s the most popular car color in America.
Car manufacturers are finally developing better ways to hook your iPhone into your car.
Check out this video demo showing how BMW is integrating the iPhone into car entertainment systems.
Patched in through BMW’s iDrive system, the iPhone can can be used to play music, web radio, or send updates and messages to Facebook and Twitter.
“This suite of technologies allows smartphone features — the things people really love on their smartphone — to be integrated in a safe, easy-to-use way in your BMW,” says BMW Technology Group senior engineer Rob Passaro in the video.
“The great thing about this is, as Apple updates new features on its iPod, we get it automatically. You don’t have to go to the dealership to get these functions in your car as soon as they are available.”