Ferrari, Mercedes-Benz & Volvo sign on for Apple’s iPhone-friendly CarPlay

by David Needle

March 3 2014

Apple announced CarPlay, a new way to navigate, make calls and control music using an iPhone integrated with the car. 

“iPhone users always want their content at their fingertips and CarPlay lets drivers use their iPhone in the car with minimized distraction,” said Greg Joswiak, Apple’s VP of iPhone and iOS Product Marketing.

Ferrari, Mercedes-Benz and Volvo plan to unwrap CarPlay support this week, and Apple said it has signed deals with other major car markers, including BMW, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Hyundai, Jaguar Land Rover, Kia Motors, Mitsubishi Motors, Nissan Motor Company, PSA Peugeot Citroën, Subaru, Suzuki and Toyota. 

Apple says a key advantage of CarPlay is that it can be used handsfree or with minimal touch operation to reduce driver distraction.

Once an iPhone is connected to a vehicle with CarPlay integration for example, consumers can use voice recognition to interact with Apple’s Siri digital assistant  to access contacts, make calls, return missed calls or listen to voicemails.

“When incoming messages or notifications arrive, Siri provides an eyes-free experience by responding to requests through voice commands, by reading drivers’ messages and letting them dictate responses or simply make a call,” Apple said in a release.

Apple CarPlay is available as an update to iOS 7 and works with Lightning-enabled iPhones, including iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c and iPhone 5. CarPlay will be available in select cars shipping in 2014.

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