What are the newest infotainment developments for your car?
Have you heard of CarPlay or Android Auto? Of course you have this two newest infotainment developments for your car are considered to be a real breakthrough in the field of motor vehicle management. Of course they can’t replace a live driver, such a development is waiting for us in a distant future, yet they are specially designed for keeping drivers attention on the road. Presently, there are two main rivals in this area: CarPlay for iOS and Android Auto for Android.
iOS in the car
What is CarPlay?
Basically, it is a touchscreen display inbuilt in your car, to which you can connect your iPhone. Once you plug an iPhone into your car, you will be able to use a familiar interface with all your music, audiobooks and several selected apps. The idea of iOS in the car is simple: get your eyes off your phone and drive safe.
How does it works?
It isn’t hard to make it work. All you have to do is just plugging an iPhone into your car via lightning cable. Thereafter CarPlay casts the user interface on the in-car screen.Yes, as simple as it sounds.
Ways to control Apple CarPlay
CarPlay is designed for all kinds of user, that is why Apple company offers several ways of controlling it:
• by using Siri
• by using a touchscreen display
• by using knobs
Let’s take a closer look at each method separately.
Controlling by using Siri
This way will definitely help you keep you concentrated on driving, as you can control most CarPlay functions with your voice (starting from commanding Siri to play your favorite music, ending with dictating an answer to your newest messages).
Controlling by using a touchscreen display
Certain CarPlay cars have touchscreen displays inbuilt into the dashboard. In case you are a tablet lover, you get used to it quickly, as it looks pretty much the same.
Controlling by using knobs
Along with touchscreen display and Siri you can also control CarPlay with knobs and buttons.
As you can see, all of this ways are different, yet they all serve one purpose: get your attention from your phone and draw it back to the road. However you should remember, that not all iPhones are compatible with CarPlay. You can use iPhone 5 and newer versions, but all others will not work, unfortunately.
Major iPhone apps confirmed for CarPlay
As you may already understood, CarPlay will not support all of your Apple apps, as it is designed to keep you away from most distractions that your iPhone provides. CarPlay-compatible apps must follow Apple’s strict safety requirements for in-car use.
Here is the list of apps confirmed for CarPlay:
• At Bat
• CBS Radio
• Slacker Radio
Not much, as you can see. Yet it leaves enough space for new developments and ideas.
Why aren’t there so many apps for CarPlay?
First of all, Apple has very restrictive standards about what type of apps may be compatible with CarPlay. You can’t blame them for acting so, they put safety above everything else. The second reason is the market isn’t that big yet (especially comparing with iPhone or Macbook markets). Once more people have CarPlay in their cars, there will appear more ideas of what kind of apps consumers actually need.
Read also: Developing Apps for Apple TV
Android for car
Android and Apple go side by side in developing vehicle infotainment systems, so the are pretty much alike. Android Auto software offers deeper integration with vehicle infotainment, climate control systems and putting assistant front and center for more voice control inside and outside the car. Android for car automatically brings you useful information – like suggested destinations, upcoming appointments, and weather conditions.
How is it different from CarPlay?
• You can use in-dash display and your phone separately (if it is running an Android 5.0 or higher) to control Android Auto.
• Android is compatible with Google apps (like Google Maps, for example).
• Android Auto also seems much more open for third-party developers.
Developing for CarPlay and Android Auto app development
You may already ask yourself, what kind of new opportunities Android Auto app development and Carplay development will bring to the third-party developers. It is obvious, that potential for development in this market is limited, due to the fact, that both CarPlay and Android Auto promote safe driving with minimum distractions. So most likely the development of apps will be reduced to two categories:
• Apps, that are developed specifically for CarPlay and Android Auto
You will not use them outside your car, yet they are going to be useful while driving.
• Mobile apps, that are adapted for CarPlay and Android Auto
Now, here market gets more limited, because you won’t play games or use your social networks while driving.
What kind of apps do you even need while driving than?
• Maps and navigation.
• Voice calls and messaging.
• Relevant notifications.
• Music and radio.
• Voice control.
Developing for CarPlay and Android Auto will not be easy for several reasons. Firstly, core apps already cover most of these needs. Secondly, monetization will be problematic, because startups won’t be able to rely on ads anymore (reasons are small user base, inconvenient placement of advertisement, since it is assumed that you will not be looking through ads while driving). But there is always a room for something new, right?
Let’s presume, what kind of apps may be useful for vehicle users in the future:
• Road safety.
• Security and insurance liability.
• Applications for motoring enthusiasts.
• Fuel economy applications.
• Health and ergonomics.
As you can see, there are some promising areas, where you can make a good startup.
Read also: Mobile App Solutions for Startups
Why and how develop for CarPlay and Android Auto?
Despite the fact, that it may be challenging to start creating new apps for Carplay and Android Auto, it is still an entirely new area with a promising future. So, if you are brave enough and you have some good startup ideas, first thing you should do is visit Android Auto or Apple CarPlay developer page, there you can find a lot of useful information.
There are several aspects, that you should think about if you want to buy a car with infotainment system. First of all, motor vehicle management is an area, where progress will take a long time, since buying a car is not the same as buying a phone. An average term of using a smartphone is from one to three years, when an average term of using a car goes up to five-ten years. So, if you are up to buying a car with CarPlay, remember, that you are going to use iPhones for as long as you use your car. And so will all members of your family, who drive the same vehicle.
Also, there is a possibility to buy an infotainment system separately (in case you already have a car and you have no intentions to change it soon). But then again, it is pretty expensive and there is a huge possibility that it will not work with your car the same, as it would work with a vehicle, for which it was designed. So, it is a little bit tricky.
Yet again, this is a brand new technologies, that are going to become better and better with years, so let’s keep that in mind.