Apple CarPlay is a device that connects your iPhone to your vehicle’s infotainment system. Many of your favorite applications are projected into the dashboard screen of your car, allowing you to use them safely when driving without being interrupted by your iPhone. Here’s the Complete Guide on How to use Apple CarPlay in 2021 along with some additional useful information.
CarPlay’s key goal is to eliminate the need for you to take your hands off the steering wheel in order to access your iPhone’s important functions and applications.
Apple enjoys being the pioneer of new technologies, and CarPlay is no exception. Apple and BMW in the United States collaborated on the first CarPlay design.
It was called “iPod Out,” and it allowed drivers to see and hear analog video and audio from some iOS devices when driving. This led the way for what we see today as a car-specific interface for apps. In 2013, “iOS in the Car” was released and in 2014, Apple CarPlay was introduced at the Geneva Motor Show.
So, how can you get started with Apple CarPlay?
Requirements for Apple CarPlay
There’s a huge list of cars that support Apple CarPlay. To bring it another way, most of the car manufacturers have started implementing Apple CarPlay in their 2016 and later models of vehicles.
If you try to use Apple CarPlay in a car that is older than 2016 or does not support Apple CarPlay, you’ll need a third-party infotainment device. Rather than purchasing a brand new vehicle, this is an economical way to use Apple CarPlay.
Since this is an Apple device, it is only compatible with iPhones. One of the following models is required:
- iPhone 5, 5c, 5s
- iPhone SE
- iPhone 6, 6s, 6 Plus, S6 Plus
- iPhone 7, 7 Plus
- iPhone 8, 8 Plus
- iPhone X, Xr, Xs, Xs Max
- iPhone 11, 11 Pro, 11 Pro Max
- iPhone 12, 12 Mini, 12 Pro, 12 Pro Max
In general, you’ll need an iPhone 5 or later. To take advantage of the latest CarPlay features in iOS 14, you’ll need a smartphone that supports the most recent security update (so iPhone 7 and newer).
Here you can check the list of vehicles (cars, motorcycles, and trucks) that support Apple CarPlay.
What is Apple CarPlay and how does it work?
It’s easy to figure out how CarPlay works. The great thing is that you won’t need to download any new software in order to use CarPlay. You can bind your car in one of two ways:
You can use Apple CarPlay via USB port in most cars by connecting your iPhone to the USB port.
You can also connect wirelessly through Bluetooth if you have a newer model vehicle.
Option 1: If you have an iPhone and a compatible car, you can use Apple CarPlay wirelessly:
On your iPhone, go to Settings > General > CarPlay.
You must now add the car to your list of recognized devices.
To add the car for the first time, turn on your Bluetooth and scroll down to “Other Devices.” Choose the vehicle and then follow any pairing guidelines that appear.
Option 2: Using a USB cable, it’s fairly easy. When you connect your phone to the car’s panel, the CarPlay interface should appear on the car screen.
Remember that once your phone is attached to the engine, you would have little control of the handset. When navigating, for example, you can only use the map on the car screen.
How to use Apple CarPlay
This is the most enjoyable part. You’ll see a home screen that looks like a larger version of your iPhone home screen with all available or compatible applications until you’re paired. CarPlay now has wallpaper screens instead of a solid backdrop for iOS 14.
Other CarPlay-compatible applications include Music, Maps, Podcasts, Audiobooks, emails, and phone calls, in addition to all built-in Apple apps. Some mapping applications, such as Google Maps, are included in this category. To use applications in the car, you must first add them to your device.
For the first time, the iOS 14 update introduced additional types of applications, such as parking, food distribution, and electric car charging stations. The majority of radio platforms, such as Spotify, effortlessly sync with where you left off when listening on your phone.
Use Siri in conjunction with Apple CarPlay
A voice recognition button is normally found on the steering wheel of a car to use Siri. When you press it, the same UI that appears on your phone when Siri is enabled appears on the dashboard. You can use Siri to get directions to a place or send a text message, much as you would on your smartphone.
You can sometimes leave the CarPlay screen and return to the car manufacturer’s default GUI. You don’t need to be concerned; if you didn’t unplug something, you’re already attached to CarPlay. You just need to locate the CarPlay button, which will return you to the CarPlay screen.
It’s easy to disconnect once you’ve arrived at your destination. Simply switching off the car as usual, and your phone will resume regular function. You should also unplug the USB cable. However, if you need to hear the conclusion of the podcast you were listening to, you should keep the car running and your phone connected. Take advantage of your car’s stereo system when you’re in it.
Customize CarPlay Display
You can also customize the CarPlay display from your iPhone by simply heading over to the Settings > General > CarPlay, then In the My Car section tap on your Car name, now under Car Page, tap on customize and drag drop the apps as desired.
Common FAQs related to Apple CarPlay
Most people still have doubts regarding Apple CarPlay. They search all over google to clear their doubts. We have included a list of commonly asked questions regarding Apple CarPlay so that you do not have to keep scrolling through google for queries related to your specific issue. You can clear all your queries here:What apps can I use with Apple CarPlay?
It is true that you won’t be able to use all the apps in your iPhone with Apple CarPlay as you can with other systems. You also have to keep in mind that this isn’t a system to use your iPhone as you normally would. For instance, you can’t watch videos because it is distracting and that could cause an accident.
The default iPhone apps that are compatible with CarPlay include Phone, Calendar, Music, Maps, Messages, Now Playing, Podcasts, and Audiobooks.
The biggest messaging app for CarPlay is WhatsApp. If you want music apps, you can download Amazon Music, YouTube Music, and Spotify, among others. We all know that Google Maps is probably the preferred navigation app for most but you can also use Waze.What are the best CarPlay Features?
The Interface: The interface that comes with CarPlay is pretty good. With its split-screen feature, You can have your map navigating you to a site on the main part of the screen but then on the right-hand side, you can set the interface up to see your ETA, calendar events, and even what song is playing.
Hey Siri: All of your apps can be controlled using your voice and calling “Hey Siri”. If you press and hold the voice command button on your steering wheel or the CarPlay home button on your dashboard screen, you can ask Siri questions, or ask her to do things like play music, listen to radio stations, or navigate to a location.
You can make phone calls and send messages too.
If you have Apple’s HomeKit, you can even ask Siri to open your garage door. Siri and Apple Maps together is one of the best ways to navigate.
User-friendly: Apple CarPlay is very simple to use, even if you are new to Apple. The interface is simple, each app icon is large enough to make it easier to keep your eyes on the road. Many of the third-party apps you download are also available on the screen.Is Apple CarPlay worth it?
This is the biggest question that we have been receiving a lot of times, and the answer really depends upon you.
Generally speaking, whether Apple CarPlay is worth it will come down to your own personal preferences and your financial situation. If you drive an older vehicle and have no interest in the features that come with brand-new cars, then you will likely think that Apple CarPlay isn’t worth it.
But if you work a job that requires you to travel a lot, and also requires you to keep in touch with people, then you will probably think that it is worth it.
In order to decide whether Apple CarPlay is worth it, you need to understand that this will be impacted by the make and model of car that you are thinking of buying.
Some brands, including Ford and Honda, include Apple CarPlay at no cost as part of their newer model vehicles. If you are interested in one of these vehicles, there’s no debating that this service is worth it.
But a lot of car manufacturers do not include Apple CarPlay in their models. If you are interested in buying one of these models then you will have to pay extra on top to have the service installed. This is when you really need to question if it is worth it.What is Apple CarPlay?
Apple CarPlay is a service created by Apple that is featured in most modern cars. It is also a feature on most modern car infotainment systems that can be fitted into older vehicles. This allows you to control your iPhone and view apps and media on your device through screen in your car. It is very similar to the Android Auto service, except it is designed solely for use with Apple iPhones.
The display of the Apple CarPlay service mirrors the display of your own iPhone once your phone has been connected. Because of this, it is very easy to control and use.
Initially, you will have to connect your iPhone to the Apple CarPlay system using Bluetooth or a lightning cable. But once you are connected via Bluetooth the connection will switch over to Wi-Fi so that the Bluetooth does not run your phone’s battery down.
One of the most popular features of Apple CarPlay is that it comes with a navigation system that removes the need for an external Satellite-based navigation system. The navigation system on Apple CarPlay comes with moving-map functionality meaning you can track your process on your journey, and ensure you are heading in the right direction.
Apple CarPlay is very popular because it offers the ability to use a lot of different apps, and it is very easy to use.What does Apple CarPlay do?
We’ve already mentioned that Apple CarPlay has a navigation option, but there are lots of other things that this system can also do. Apple CarPlay was designed to reduce the amount of people who use their phones while they drive, or at least ensure that the way in which they use their phones is safe.
Apple CarPlay allows you to access all the apps on your iPhone which are viewed as safe to use while you are driving. This removes the need for you to actively use your phone while driving, and makes the road a safer place.
In the social world that we live in, it can be difficult to detach from your phone, so Apple CarPlay allows you to send and receive texts and other messages while keeping your focus on the road.
As well as using Apple CarPlay to find your way to your destination, and keep in touch with friends and family, you can also use it to make your journey more enjoyable. Apple CarPlay allows you to stream music using services like YouTube Music, Spotify and Pandora.Is there a subscription fee for Apple CarPlay?
No, in most cases, there are no monthly charges for Apple CarPlay. However, this doesn’t mean that the service is free. You might have to pay for Apple CarPlay, you might not. It all comes down to the manufacturer of your vehicle and whether they include Apple CarPlay as one of the features in their car.
As we have said, companies like Ford and Honda include Apple CarPlay in all of their models. As this is standard procedure, you will not have to pay anything extra to have this feature on your car. You aren’t necessarily getting it for free because the cost is included in the price of your vehicle, but you also aren’t paying anything extra on top for this service.
Other companies, including BMW and Mercedes, do not include Apple CarPlay in their models. You can have it installed, but this will cost extra on top.
Some companies will charge you a large single installment payment for this service, while others will charge for the service monthly. This is why, in some cases, there is a monthly charge for Apple CarPlay.
One company that definitely charges monthly subscription fees for Apple CarPlay is BMW as they offer the service free for the first 12 months if you want it, but then charge you a monthly installment after that. So in most cases, there is no monthly charge for Apple CarPlay, but it is always best to check with your car dealership.What is so good about Apple CarPlay?
There are lots of things that make Apple CarPlay so good to use, but the main reason is how easy it is to control. New technology can often be intimidating, but Apple CarPlay mirrors your own iPhone which makes it very user-friendly. This is very important as you don’t want to be distracted from driving because you are struggling to control your car’s infotainment system.
Another thing that is excellent about Apple CarPlay is that it is compatible with all the apps you would ever need while driving. With Apple CarPlay you can safely update your loved ones on how your journey is going, take important phone calls, and play your own music.
Once you have connected your phone to the system once, it is simple to reconnect every time that you get in the car. This means that you also don’t have to worry about this process adding time to your journey.
Finally, one of the best things about Apple CarPlay is that it is continually improving, and is regularly updated by Apple. When the company notices an issue with the system, they fix it to continue improving the system. This ensures that Apple CarPlay remains user-friendly and enjoyable for those who have it in their vehicle.Can you add Apple CarPlay to any car?
Yes, you can add CarPlay to any car. However, this is not an easy process. If you want Apple CarPlay in your vehicle, then the easiest way to do this is to buy a new car that has this skill enabled. Of course, this will not be economically feasible for everybody, which is why you can also add CarPlay to an existing vehicle by using an aftermarket infotainment system. These are designed to replace the stock car stereo that is installed in a vehicle when it is first sold. Replacing the stereo system in a vehicle has always been a great way to update an older car, and this is also how you can add CarPlay to an existing car.
To do this, you will need to buy an infotainment system which comes with Apple CarPlay enabled. These systems tend to be towards the higher end of the price scale, but they are still considerably cheaper than the cost of buying a new vehicle. Some brands who produce this style of stereo are Kenwood and Pioneer, so this is a good place to start your search.
Once you have your system you can then take your vehicle to a garage where you can get the system replaced. After it has been fitted, all you need to do is connect your phone to the stereo and your Apple CarPlay will work as new.Can Apple CarPlay replace navigation?
Yes, you could replace your existing car navigation system with Apple CarPlay. Apple CarPlay comes with an excellent navigation system that moves as you drive, allowing you to follow your journey easily. In fact, the Apple CarPlay navigation system is so good that this is one of the main reasons why people like it.
One of the benefits of using Apple CarPlay for your navigation system is that it connects to the screen on your dashboard. Traditionally a satellite-based navigation system would connect to your windshield, which means that you do lose a small amount of your field of vision. The navigation system on Apple CarPlay does not obstruct your view of the road at all, which is why it is so great.
Finally, people seem to prefer using their Apple CarPlay’s navigation because it is simply easier to use. You can tap the destination into your phone and save it before you get into your car. Then all you need to do is choose this destination off of the saved list, and you are good to go.
So, in short, yes Apple CarPlay could replace the existing navigation system that you use in your vehicle.
What more can we tell but “Apple, you’ve made our lives happier once again!” There are no complex downloads or profiles to create in order to link to Apple CarPlay. You’ll be able to start driving comfortably in just a few moves.
There are some Apple CarPlay specifications, but nothing out of the ordinary compared to other schemes. CarPlay supports a large range of games, far more than you will possibly use when traveling.
We hope this Apple CarPlay guide was helpful and that you now have a better understanding of how Apple CarPlay works and how to use it.