Apple CarPlay Support Comes to BBC iPlayer Radio App

The BBC today updated its Radio iPlayer app to support Apple CarPlay, allowing vehicle drivers with the feature to listen to BBC radio more safely when behind the wheel.

A simplified touch interface has been adopted for the new in-car version, designed to be easy to fast-forward in a show or skip through entire episodes.


Apart from CarPlay and Android Auto support, the update also brings additional features to help make radio listening a more personalized in-car experience.

The new app interface is split into four sections titled Following, Listen Later, Downloads, and Stations. The Following section gathers favorited shows for easy access from within CarPlay, Listen Later lists shows tagged by users for future listening, while the Downloads section keeps shows ready for listening offline in areas with poor signal.

The BBC iPlayer Radio app is a free download for U.K. listeners available from the App Store. [Direct Link]


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New Car Buyers Increasingly Interested in Apple CarPlay

CarPlay is becoming an increasingly important feature that consumers look for when purchasing a vehicle, according to a new report released today by Strategy Analytics.

In a survey querying future car buyers about their interest in Android Auto, CarPlay, and Baidu CarLife in the United States, Western Europe, and China, Strategy Analytics discovered the majority of consumers are interested in CarPlay.


In the United States, 23 percent of respondents said CarPlay was a "must have" feature, while 56 percent said they were "interested." Just 21 percent were "not interested." In Europe and China, the numbers were even higher. 36 percent of respondents said CarPlay was a must have feature in China, and 29 percent said the same in Europe.

No fewer than 30 percent of consumers surveyed said they were willing to pay more for a smartphone mirroring feature like CarPlay or Android Auto, provided it's offered at a reasonable price point. For existing customers who have access to mirroring systems like CarPlay, they're often used exclusively over the existing in-car infotainment options. From Strategy Analytics' Derek Viita, author of the report
"All of our research suggests that consumers will soon be ready to adopt CarPlay and Android Auto for their infotainment needs, which is another round of bad news for embedded navigation suppliers and OEMs that want to sell upgraded navigation systems." Continued Viita, "It also shows a missed opportunity: OEMs have been including these systems 'as standard,' when our research suggests that consumers would actually be willing to pay for them, even to the price of traditional navigation options."
For the survey, Strategy Analytics queried 1,503 consumers in the United States, 1,607 in Western Europe, and 2,003 in China. To participate, respondents were asked to confirm whether they owned or leased a motor vehicle and a smartphone, and they were only asked about in-car mirroring systems available in their regions and compatible with their smartphones.

Though CarPlay has been available since 2015, car manufacturers didn't begin widely adopting the feature until mid-2016. CarPlay is now included in many new 2016 and 2017 vehicles from a wide range of car makers like Ford, Cadillac, Honda, Kia, Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen, Fiat-Chrysler, and more.

CarPlay in the new Nissan Leaf

More than 200 vehicles include CarPlay support, with Apple offering an official master list of all the CarPlay vehicles available in the United States on its website. CarPlay is also available in many aftermarket infotainment units from companies like Pioneer and Alpine.

Related Roundup: CarPlay

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Pioneer Working to Resolve iOS 11 Compatibility Issue With Select Receivers

Pioneer has informed customers it has discovered an incompatibility with iOS 11 and AppRadio Mode on certain in-dash receivers it sells.


If you connect an iPhone or iPod touch that has been updated to iOS 11 and launch AppRadio Mode, you will experience a blank screen or other display malfunction that disables AppRadio Mode, according to the company.

Pioneer said it is working to resolve the issue and will update a notice posted on its website once firmware updates for the receivers are available. For now, the only solution to maintain compatibility is to remain on iOS 10.

AppRadio Mode is Pioneer's own interface for running over 30 compatible smartphone apps, browsing the web, navigating, and listening to music, podcasts, and internet radio through your car's speakers.

Pioneer's list of affected models include many AVH, AVIC, and SPH receivers, some of which double as aftermarket CarPlay systems.

Related Roundup: CarPlay
Tag: Pioneer

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New 2018 Nissan Leaf Features Support for CarPlay

Nissan today unveiled its redesigned 2018 all-electric Nissan Leaf, and one of the features new to the vehicle is support for Apple CarPlay. The new Nissan Leaf comes equipped with a 7-inch display that's compatible with CarPlay and Android Auto.

Nissan announced its first CarPlay-compatible vehicles back in June of 2016, and has thus far implemented support in the 2017 Maxima, Micra, and Murano.


Along with CarPlay, the Nissan Leaf features a range of 150 miles, ProPILOT driving assistance with speed maintenance, steering guidance, and braking, a single e-Pedal for braking and accelerating, and a revamped design.

Customers who reserve a Nissan Leaf are eligible for an exclusive gift that includes an Apple Watch Series 2, a GoPro HERO5 Black, or a Nest and Google Home bundle.

CarPlay support was slow to roll out following its initial introduction, but interest has picked up. Many 2016 and 2017 vehicles from a range of manufacturers offer the feature. Apple maintains a list of vehicles that are compatible with CarPlay on its website.

Related Roundup: CarPlay
Tag: Nissan

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Sony Introduces New Aftermarket CarPlay and Siri Eyes Free Systems

Sony today introduced its new XAV-AX200 in-car audio receiver, which doubles as an aftermarket CarPlay system.

Sony's previous-generation XAV-AX100 receiver

The double-DIN XAV-AX200 has a 6.4-inch touchscreen, but Sony didn't specify if its capacitive, or resistive like its XAV-AX100 predecessor.

Other key features include both CarPlay and Android Auto support, Bluetooth, SiriusXM satellite radio compatibility, a built-in four-channel amplifier, three external camera inputs, and a built-in DVD player.

Sony also unveiled a MEX-GS820BT receiver that can pair with two smartphones at once via Bluetooth. It doesn't appear to support CarPlay, but it does feature Siri Eyes Free, and similar voice controls on Android smartphones. Sony said the unit has a high-contrast vertical-alignment LCD of an unspecified size.

Siri Eyes Free helps minimize driver distraction with Siri voice recognition, allowing drivers to interact with an iPhone 4s or later without needing to look at the in-dash screen. The feature can be used to make calls, play music, hear and compose text messages, read notifications, use Apple Maps, and more.

Sony said the XAV-AX200 and MEX-GS820BT will be available across North America by the end of the year. Pricing wasn't disclosed. The older XAV-AX100 generally retails for between $499 and $549 in the United States.

Sony's press release did not include pictures, and the company didn't respond when we requested them directly.

Other aftermarket CarPlay systems are available from Alpine, Clarion, Kenwood, JBL, JVC, Pioneer, Sony, and other manufacturers.

Related Roundup: CarPlay
Tags: Sony, Siri Eyes Free

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Volvo’s New VNL Series Semi Trucks Include CarPlay Support

Volvo Trucks today unveiled its new line of VNL long-haul semi trucks, which come equipped with CarPlay and several other comfort-oriented technologies.

Designed for professional drivers who travel over long distances, the VNL series trucks include what Volvo says is an "all-new" dashboard with a 5-inch color display that offers up trip and diagnostic data plus a 7-inch color touchscreen that supports CarPlay, a backup camera, and navigation features.


With CarPlay support, drivers are able to access their music, incoming phone calls, messages, and other content safely through a direct connection with the iPhone. Along with the touchscreen, CarPlay controls can be accessed through a smart steering wheel that puts controls for nearly all interface functions right at a driver's fingertips.

CarPlay is just one of the many driver perks built into the truck, which also includes an adjustable steering column, ergonomic seats with heating and ventilation, and sleeper cabs with a reclining bunk.


The VNL trucks come in a range of configurations, including a new 70-inch sleeper in Volvo VNL 760 and 740 models.

Though CarPlay was first officially unveiled in March of 2014, wide availability of the feature didn't come until mid-2015. Since then, hundreds of manufacturers have built CarPlay support into their vehicles, and many aftermarket solutions have been made available. Apple maintains a list of vehicles that support CarPlay on its website.

Related Roundup: CarPlay

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Alpine Debuts First Aftermarket Wireless CarPlay Receiver

Alpine today announced the launch of its latest CarPlay receiver, the iLX-107. While Alpine has released several CarPlay receivers in the past, and, the iLX-107 is unique because it is the first aftermarket CarPlay receiver that comes equipped with support for wireless connectivity.

The iLX-107 features a 7-inch VGA display with a capacitive touch screen, a shallow, mech-less body that allows it to fit into most vehicles, support for a range of accessories, and integration with steering wheel controls and a rear view camera.


According to Alpine, connecting an iPhone to the iLX-107 is simple, with just a few setup steps involved. The system uses 5GHz WiFi to connect to an iPhone when in the car.
The iLX-107 gives you the luxury of simply getting and going. It allows you to seamlessly access your iPhone on your vehicle's touchscreen without having to connect a cable every time you get in. Set up is as easy as pairing the wireless Apple CarPlay unit from your iPhone or simply connecting the lightning cable for the first time. Once you go through the extremely easy initial set up, the iLX-107 will automatically connect to the most frequently paired iPhone each time the vehicle is started. The connection "just works" and allows you to get in the car and go without having to stop to take your phone out of your purse or pocket.
Wireless CarPlay functionality was first introduced in 2015, but no wireless infotainment system was available until late 2016, when it was added to the 2017 BMW 5 Series Sedan. Most CarPlay systems, both native and aftermarket, require users to connect an iPhone to a vehicle using a Lightning cable that plugs into a standard USB port.

Alpine is pricing the iLX-107 at $900, making it one of the company's more expensive receivers. It is available starting today at dealers across the country, with Alpine offering a tool on its website to locate a dealer that can install the system.

Related Roundup: CarPlay

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Ford Brings CarPlay to 2016 Vehicles With SYNC 3 Update

Ford today released a SYNC 3 software update that adds CarPlay and Android Auto support to its 2016 model year vehicles.


Ford said customers with Wi-Fi-enabled vehicles can set up their vehicle to receive the update automatically. SYNC 3 version 2.2 can also be downloaded from the Ford Owner website and installed with a USB drive, or customers can visit any Ford dealership to have the update process completed for free.

Last summer, Ford made CarPlay and Android Auto available in all of its 2017 vehicles with SYNC 3. At the time, it promised it would bring CarPlay and Android Auto to its 2016 model year vehicles by the end of the year, and while it missed that target by about five months, the update has now arrived.

In late 2015, Ford retroactively added Siri Eyes Free support to 5 million 2011-2016 model year vehicles.

CarPlay brings Maps, Phone, Messages, Music, Podcasts, and a number of third-party apps like Spotify to a vehicle's dashboard. Apple's in-car software can be controlled with Siri and a vehicle's built-in controls for convenient access to common iPhone features. It's compatible with iPhone 5 and later.

Related Roundup: CarPlay
Tags: Android Auto, Ford, Ford SYNC

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Pioneer Unveils New Aftermarket CarPlay Receivers, Including First Single-DIN Model For Older Vehicles

Pioneer today unveiled five new NEX in-dash multimedia receivers with CarPlay and Android Auto support, including its first single-DIN model.


The single-DIN AVH-3300NEX is a smaller, more universally sized receiver that can fit into many older and collectible cars. Unlike a double-DIN receiver, which has a built-in display, this single-DIN model features a 7-inch pop out, motorized display. The whole unit is also detachable for added security.

The other four receivers are double-DIN models, including the 7-inch AVH-2330NEX and AVH-2300NEX and 6.2-inch AVH-1330NEX and AVH-1300NEX.

In addition to CarPlay and Android Auto, Pioneer said all five receivers feature Bluetooth for hands-free calling and music streaming, native Spotify and Pandora, a USB port, HD Radio, and SiriusXM compatibility with a tuner sold separately. All models are also backup camera and Pioneer navigation system ready.

The AVH-3300NEX, AVH-2330NEX and AVH-1330NEX also come with a remote control to adjust volume, audio sources, and more.

Pioneer said the new NEX lineup will be available through resellers in July with suggested retail prices of $600 for the single-DIN model, and between $400 and $500 for the double-DIN models, in the United States.

Pioneer's current NEX receivers retail for between $400 and $1,400 in the United States. Competing aftermarket CarPlay systems are available from Alpine, Clarion, Kenwood, JVC, JBL, Sony, and other manufacturers.

Related Roundup: CarPlay
Tag: Pioneer

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CarPlay Scores 85% Customer Satisfaction Rate in Limited Study

iPhone owners are largely satisfied with Apple's CarPlay, according to a new report from market research firm Strategy Analytics.


The report is available to Strategy Analytics clients only, but author Chris Schreiner shared some of his findings with MacRumors.

31 percent of users said they were "very satisfied" with CarPlay, while 54 percent said they were "satisfied," for an overall customer satisfaction rate of 85 percent. However, the report only looked at 70 owners of 2016-2017 vehicles with CarPlay installed in the United States, which is a rather small sample size.

43 percent of those users are "very likely" to recommend CarPlay to others, while 37 percent are "likely" to recommend it, said Strategy Analytics. Those with CarPlay were likely to use it for "all or most" of their in-car infotainment needs, often in favor of their vehicle's standard system, according to the report.

70 percent of participants with both CarPlay and a built-in navigation system in their car said they choose CarPlay with Apple Maps most or all of the time over their vehicle's standard system. 59 percent of the people said they use CarPlay for audio needs most or all of the time over their vehicle's radio.

"Given Apple's continued updates to CarPlay enhancing the experience further, and car-makers' inability to do the same along with their long development times, CarPlay is poised to handle the vast majority of consumers' in-vehicle needs," said Schreiner, Director of Syndicated Research at Strategy Analytics.

While customer satisfaction with CarPlay might be strong, Apple's in-car software platform is far from perfect.

Last month, a side-by-side test of CarPlay and Android Auto showed Siri was often unable to properly interpret what the driver was saying, which in one case led Apple Maps to incorrectly navigate him to an address in Tennessee rather than Toronto. Android Auto, meanwhile, interpreted voice commands correctly.

Video courtesy of YouTube channel The Straight Pipes via Daring Fireball

CarPlay continues to improve in other areas. In iOS 10.3, for example, Apple provided drivers with a quicker and safer way to switch between apps without having to take their eyes off the road for long periods of time. Wireless CarPlay is also now available in select BMW models, or with Alpine's aftermarket system.

Apple is also rumored to be working on "enhanced" Siri capabilities for the iPhone, and those improvements would likely extend to CarPlay.

CarPlay is now available in over 200 vehicle models in the United States, enabling drivers to make and receive calls, access text messages, play music, get directions, check traffic conditions, and more with Siri voice commands and on-screen controls. The platform requires an iPhone 5 or newer.

Aftermarket systems are available from brands such as Alpine, Kenwood, and Pioneer for do-it-yourself CarPlay installations.

Related Roundup: CarPlay
Tag: Strategy Analytics

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