Amazon wants to challenge CarPlay and Android Auto

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Connect the Amazon Echo Dot to your existing speaker system, and you bingo! -- your speakers just got smarts.
Amazon wants to move Alexa from the home into our cars.
Photo: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

Amazon is trying to move in on Apple’s CarPlay and Android Auto by convincing carmakers to bake in Alexa as an in-car infotainment technology.

According to a new report, Amazon is scaling up its Echo Auto ambitions. It has already convinced BMW and Audi to adopt the tech. It is now supposedly trying to get other automakers to sign up as well.

Sony’s new CarPlay system is big as an iPad

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Sony XAV-AX8000 with Apple CarPlay
Apple CarPlay support puts a larger version of your iPhone into your car’s dashboard.
Photo: Sony

Car infotainment systems have grown dramatically in size, and Sony promises one that allows people with older models to upgrade to an 8.95-inch screen. It supports Apple’s CarPlay, so the driver’s iPhone is ready to provide navigation, make calls or play music.

iOS 13 beta 5 arrives along with new tvOS 13 build

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Test shows how much battery Dark Mode will save you on certain iPhones
Test shows how much battery Dark Mode will save you on certain iPhones
Photo: Apple

Developers received a fresh batch of new beta builds this morning in the form of iOS 13 beta 5. Apple seeded the new software updates just under two weeks after the last set of betas came out, bringing fresh changes to mouse support on iPad, smaller quick action menus and tons of bug fixes.

16-inch MacBook Pro details emerge, and the Apple Car lives, this week on The CultCast

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CultCast 398
The all-new 16-inch MacBook Pro could be right around the corner...
Photo: Apple

This week on The CultCast: A new report gives us a price tag and release date for the upcoming 16-inch MacBook Pro. Then: A new hire signals that the Apple Car is far from dead; and there’s finally a way to get podcasts recommendations tailored just for you. Plus, stayed tuned for our favorite shows and Comic-Con trailer in an all-new What We’re Into!

Our thanks to Squarespace for supporting this episode. Easily create a beautiful website all by yourself, at Squarespace.com/cultcast. Use offer code CultCast at checkout to get 10% off your first purchase of a website or domain.

BMW will charge outrageous annual fee for CarPlay

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CarPlay-dashboard-iOS-13
My cheap Kia came with CarPlay as standard.
Photo: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

BMW has decided that it will charge customers an annual fee if they want to enjoy CarPlay in its newest vehicles.

It is the first car-maker to turn Apple’s platform into a subscription service. Most now include CarPlay as standard, or as an optional feature that lasts as long as the vehicle.

CarPlay in iOS 13, the perfect road trip companion [Video]

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CarPlay Dashboard in iOS 13
The new CarPlay Dashboard puts everything you need on your... dashboard.
Photo: Apple

We’ve already extolled our excitement over CarPlay changes coming in iOS 13. But now that the beta season is well underway, we’ve had the chance to go fully hands on.

After taking it on a road trip, using it while commuting, and exploring the new features, this is our hands-on look at CarPlay in iOS 13.

To the moon! iPhone vs. Apollo Guidance Computer [Cult of Mac Magazine No. 306]

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A single iPhone dwarfs the Apollo Guidance Computer's processing power.
A single iPhone dwarfs the Apollo Guidance Computer's processing power.
Photo: NASA. Cover: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

Fifty years after the Apollo moon mission, the leaps in mankind’s computing power continue to amaze. For instance, did you know an iPhone could manage 120 million moon missions at once?

Get the story behind that astonishing stat, plus the latest on CarPlay, FaceApp and the likely design of this year’s new iPhones, in this week’s issue of Cult of Mac Magazine. It’s jam-packed with all the Apple news, reviews and how-tos you can fit into your weekend. (Prefer to read in your browser? Get the headlines below.)