What Exactly is CarPlay for Apple iOS7.1?

by Ed Attanasio - Wed, Mar 30, 2016 4:00 PM

On the cutting edge of everything exciting and new in the world of technology, Apple’s CarPlay is getting rave reviews for its connectivity and convenience, as well as being safe for iPhone users. Apple's newest operating system, iOS 7.1 contains many refinements and improvements to its earlier user interface. One of those features is Apple CarPlay, which boasts a safer driving experience for iPhone users. The new technology was unveiled at last year’s Geneva International Motor Show and has had everyone talking since the announcement took place.

Once announced, a wide range of carmakers rushed to integrate CarPlay into the displays of their newer models, including Mercedes-Benz, Ferrari and Volvo. More automakers plan to integrate the technology, so keep on the lookout for companies like Toyota, Ford, General Motors and many others to join the CarPlay party.

Apple's CarPlay

Drivers currently using Apple’s CarPlay are able to compose, send and receive text messages, listen to their favorite music selections and keep in touch on the go. All they have to do is plug in their iPhone and start driving. CarPlay does all the work!

CarPlay can also be used with Siri voice control for additional driving safety.  To activate the voice control feature in an integrated system, press and hold the Siri Voice Control button on the steering wheel. Vehicles equipped with CarPlay can also be controlled with the existing touchscreen technology or dials, buttons or knobs.

CarPlay works with other music apps you've already downloaded to your iPhone, like Spotify, iHeartRadio, Podcasts, Stitcher and BeatsMusic. Do you have a daily boring commute or a long drive ahead of you? Tune into your favorite sports broadcasts and audio books with ease. Get ready to enjoy hands-free driving with turn-by-turn navigation, real-time traffic updates, suggested reroutes and estimated travel times. 

Don't want to miss that text message but want to stay safe on the road?  Complete CarPlay integration means you can check voicemails, dictate messages and reply to text messages without taking your hands off the wheel or your eyes off the road. It can become your personal assistant, as CarPlay makes you more efficient and a safer (less distracted) driver as well.

CarPlay with iPhones

How Can You Get Your Hands on the CarPlay Technology? 

The iPhone 5, iPhone 5S and iPhone 5c mobile devices all support CarPlay, but you will also need to have a car that supports the technology.  The technology’s features are evolving rapidly and changing literally all the time, so be on the lookout for additional upgrades as the on-the-go technology expands throughout the automotive industry. 

Some carmakers have embraced CarPlay in a major way, to say the least. For example, the 2015 Volvo XC90 is one worth keeping your eyes on, with an integrated CarPlay interface that has all the iPhone and iPad features customers love, with a larger-than-life graphic display that is just as functional as it is classy. Looking for a more affordable option?  The 2015 Hyundai Sonata, introduced at the New York International Auto Show offers an 8-inch LCD will be the company's first car with Apple CarPlay technology.

Apple has been on our desktops and in our phones now for many years, but now the company is entering the automotive industry on a large scale with the CarPlay interface and soon the iCar, and who knows what’s next? When you’re in the market for a new car, make sure to ask the dealership if the model you’re considering has CarPlay for Apple iOS7.1 and then get ready for the connected ride of your life!

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Ed Attanasio
Editor, AutoBody-Review.com
Ed has been a professional writer for more than 35 years and his specialties include B2B reporting, blogging, ad copywriting, public relations and general editorial.