Hands on: Everything new with CarPlay in iOS 16

Hands on: Everything new with CarPlay in iOS 16

During this year’s WWDC keynote, Apple focused significantly on CarPlay. Several improvements are in the works, some of which will be implemented soon and others which will be implemented later. Here’s what’s new with CarPlay in iOS 16 and what we should expect to see.

Apple has only released an initial developer preview of iOS 16 so far. As a result, some features may change and new functionality may be introduced before the final release.

Take, for example, maps. Apple announced a major update that will allow users to create multi-stop routes. You may map out a route from your house to a petrol station, a friend’s house, a coffee shop, and finally to your final destination.

Before sending these routes to your iPhone, you can design them on your Mac using macOS Ventura. CarPlay does not offer turn-by-turn guidance for these routes in this first release. This should hopefully include in the full release in the fall of 2022.

Improvements to existing apps

Apple has improved the current CarPlay apps with iOS 16. Siri can now automatically send a message after it has been read back to you using Messages.

Before delivering a message, Siri would need affirmative approval in iOS 15, which could slow down the process. It will send the message on its way without your participation as long as the message is correct. A “change” button is still accessible on the CarPlay interface if the message has to change.

With iOS 16, the Podcasts app is also getting a major makeover. It used to be severely limited, unable to bring up recent episodes. With this update, Apple has added a new library that makes it easier to access stored episodes as well as the most recent episodes of any show you follow.

New app categories

Apple occasionally adds new categories of CarPlay-compatible apps. CarPlay apps are typically navigation or music apps, with just a few other categories accessible to display in the UI. Two new types of apps are supported by the iOS 16 release.

Both fueling and driving operations are compatible with iOS 16, but you’ll have to wait until later this year for developers to release an update. Fueling apps are self-explanatory, and they include any that can assist you find gas stations or save money on gas.

Apps for driving tasks are a little more diverse. Any apps that aid with chores while in the vehicle, such as toll rates/routes, road information, or towing support, could be added.

An all-new CarPlay experience

The majority of consumers are looking forward to the all-new CarPlay experience that Apple demonstrated during the event. Unfortunately, this is not going to happen anytime soon.

CarPlay will be available on all of your car’s screens beginning with vehicles revealed in late 2023. It’s now limited to the primary center console display and navigation direction in the instrument cluster’s middle. The future CarPlay will completely replace all displays, including additional dash displays.

There are a plethora of fonts, themes, colors, and layouts to pick from in the instrument cluster. All while keeping track of important data such as speed, range, fuel levels, RPMs, and more. This is a level of personalization from Apple that we don’t frequently see.

Widgets will find on large or wide displays. Calendar, weather, audio playing, time, route information, and Home controls are all included in Apple’s default widgets. This, too, can change.

The ability to handle your vehicle’s systems straight from the CarPlay interface is our favorite feature. You won’t have to leave CarPlay to change the air conditioning, heat the steering wheel, turn on the seat vents, or listen to the radio.

This is a significant divergence, and it is sure to cause concern among automakers. They don’t get to promote their systems since they’ve given CarPlay complete control of the vehicle.

According to Apple, vehicles will introduce in late 2023, therefore we won’t see them until 2024. Several major manufacturers have committed to using this enhanced version of CarPlay in iOS 16, according to Apple’s announcement at WWDC.

This list included brands such as Ford, Acura, Honda, Volvo, Land Rover, Nissan, and others. However, how many vehicles and how much support there will remain to be seen.

Coming soon

iOS 16 is presently available in developer beta. A public beta will launch in July, followed by a complete release in the fall. Stay back to AppleInsider for additional details on the impending software releases from Apple.

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