The infotainment war heats up as Apple announces nine new Carplay partners

apple carplay
Read our full Apple CarPlay review.

Looks like the battle for dashboard infotainment supremacy just heated up – again. Last week at Google’s I/O conference, the tech colossus premiered a new automobile dashboard operating system which looks decidedly similar to Apple’s Carplay system, called Android Auto. This week, Apple struck back, announcing nine new automakers that will join its already-stocked stable of 20 Carplay participants.

According to Tech News, the new list of cars that will incorporate Apple’s all encompassing in-dash system include Abarth, Alfa Romeo, Audi, Chrysler, Dodge, Fiat, Jeep, Mazda, and Ram. Those companies join a large swath of top names in the industry that are down with Carplay, from Ferrari and Mercedes Benz, to Honda and Ford.

Google, jumping in late to the game, has some catching up to do. Currently, it has listed only five definite auto participants, including Audi, Hyundai, GM, Honda, and Volvo. However, at the keynote for Android Auto, Google teased that it has over 40 partners involved with its “Open Automotive Alliance,” which includes both automakers and technology partners. More automakers are expected to announce participation as the system rolls out.

Both of the new systems will incorporate a full suite of technologies, including entertainment, navigation, and communication, all of which will be tied in with your smartphone. As expected, voice operation is heavily integrated into both systems as well, to keep drivers safely engaged with the road as they engage with the new technology.

According to Apple, new cars incorporating Carplay systems will start popping up later this summer, while Google’s first vehicle with the system, the Volvo XC90, will reportedly arrive at the 2014 Paris Motor Show this fall

If a new car is too rich for your blood, however, don’t fret. Apple will be working with at least two aftermarket manufacturers, including Pioneer and Alpine, to create add-on systems slated for release later this summer. The systems are still pricey, starting at around $700, but it’s a lot cheaper than a new set of wheels. Google is also expected to offer aftermarket systems with Android Auto inside, though no official partners have been disclosed.

If you’d like to find out more about both systems, check out our Android Auto coverage from Google I/O, or our hands-on ride-along with Apple Carplay.

Product Review

Ford’s reincarnated Ranger feels like a car that does everything a truck can do

The 2019 Ford Ranger aims to be a tool for weekend adventures, and goes head-to-head with midsize pickup trucks from Chevrolet, Honda, Nissan, and Toyota. Ford hasn’t sold the Ranger in the United States since 2011, so it has to make up…
Cars

Audi’s self-driving car unit teams up with Luminar to go driverless in 2021

Audi's self-driving car unit has teamed up with Luminar to develop and test autonomous technology. Luminar provides its lidar technology, which sees farther than the sensors offered by rivals, while Audi brings its own software.
Cars

The best compact cars pack full-size features in fun-size packages

The best compact cars on the market rival their counterparts in many ways, proving that bigger isn’t always better. Here, we've rounded up some of the better options available, including an SUV and an electric alternative.
Product Review

Boring takes a back seat as 2019 Corolla Hatchback mixes fun with practicality

We drive the 2019 Toyota Corolla Hatchback, the latest hatchback to bear the Corolla name. As the best-selling nameplate in automotive history, Toyota has high expectations to meet. This model mostly lives up to the legacy.
Cars

Best Products of 2018

Our reception desk has so many brown boxes stacked up, it looks like a loading dock. We’re on a first-name basis with the UPS guy. We get new dishwashers more frequently than most people get new shoes. What we’re trying to say is: We…
Music

Queen’s ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ becomes the most-streamed 20th-century song

Queen's iconic Bohemian Rhapsody has become the most-streamed 20th-century song. Knocking Nirvana's Smells Like Teen Spirit off the top spot, the British band's 1975 classic has now been streamed 1.6 billion times globally.
Music

From Jay Rock to Saba, these are the 50 best albums of 2018

We've spent the year listening to new albums, digging deep, and culling our master list into 50 favorites. From blockbuster releases to hidden gems, these are the best albums of 2018.
Music

Jam out in style with the 25 best playlists on Spotify

Music is the world's most potent drug, and the best playlists on Spotify will make you catch feelings. We've scoured the service for its top collections, and brought them together in one place -- for you.
Music

Spotify is the best streaming service, but its competitors aren’t far behind

It can be hard to decide which music streaming service is for you, so we've picked out the individual strengths of the most popular services, aiming to make your decision a little easier.
Music

Tune in to the best internet radio stations for your listening pleasure

Even in the streaming era, radio stations get some of the best exclusives and curate some of the finest handpicked playlists around. Here are the best internet radio stations, for your listening pleasure.
Home Theater

Radiohead, The Cure, and more to join Rock Hall of Fame. Listen to their hits

Radiohead, The Cure, Janet Jackson, Stevie Nicks, and more have been selected to join the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2019. Here are our favorite songs from the four artists' hit-filled careers.
Music

Here's our head-to-head comparison of Pandora and Spotify

Which music streaming platform is best for you? We pit Spotify versus Pandora, two mighty streaming services with on-demand music and massive catalogs, comparing every facet of the two services to help you decide which is best.
Home Theater

How to master your equalizer settings for the perfect sound

You may know what an EQ is, but do you know how to adjust equalizer settings for the best possible sound? We go through the basics of the modern EQ and lay out some guidelines for how to achieve tip-top sound from your system.
Music

The best new music this week: Bruce Springsteen, The Decemberists, and more

Are you looking for the best new music? Each week, we scour the internet to find the most compelling new releases just for you. On tap this week: Bruce Springsteen, The Decemberists, and Charlotte Gainsbourg.