Looks like the rumors were partially right this time around. Apple has announced, via a press release, that it will begin rolling out its in-car operating system, called CarPlay, in Ferrari, Mercedes, and Volvo cars starting this week at the Geneva Auto Show.
The idea is that CarPlay integrates with your iPhone, and lets you manage your contacts, music, phone calls, and messages in a true handsfree/eyes free mode between both your iPhone and your CarPlay system. Touch the Siri button on your steering wheel, control your Apple applications by voice.
CNET is reporting that the service is smarter than you would first imagine, considering that it can look “at your calendar and e-mails to anticipate upcoming meetings and appointments, [and then] suggest directions to the appropriate destinations.”
From the sounds of it, and information is currently sparse, the entire system will be tightly integrated with Siri. CarPlay also includes a touch screen interface for those looking to use the dashboard display instead of Siri.
Future cars to receive the features of CarPlay include: “BMW Group, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Hyundai Motor Company, Jaguar Land Rover, Kia Motors, Mitsubishi Motors, Nissan Motor Company, PSA Peugeot Citroën, Subaru, Suzuki and Toyota Motor Corp.”
Of course, iTunes Radio will also be included in the bundle of apps that will work. There’s no mention or word of 3rd party applications being included in CarPlay.
Apps like Mileage Log+ and Rdio belong in the car. It’s only a matter of time that they integrate in some way. Hopefully the APIs that are need by developers will be available in iOS 8.