Instead of using Apple’s CarPlay infotainment system or Android Auto in its 2016 vehicles, Toyota has decided to use a company you’ve probably never heard of to provide navigation and phone connectivity.
Toyota’s first vehicle with the tech will be the 2016 Tacoma pickup, outfitted with a Scout GPS Link unit from Telnav Inc. The Scout GPS link systems don’t support CarPlay, but instead allow you to use your iPhone or Android to pull up driving directions on the Toyota dashboard.
The Japanese carmaker’s reluctance to let Apple and Google take control of the dashboard comes just a day after Volkswagen announced it was supporting CarPlay and Android Auto in nearly all of its 2016 models. Even Ford, which has taken a hardline against Apple and Google’s automotive ambitions, still allows users to access CarPlay and Android Auto on some SYNC units.
One feature that distinguishes the Scout GPS Link from CarPlay and Android is it allows a split screen view of navigation and music controls, so you don’t have to bounce from app to app while trying to drive. TelNav is based out of Sunnyvale, California, and though it’s small in size, the company also provides navigation systems for GM and Ford.