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When Apple CarPlay first came to cars in 2014, it helped change how drivers could enjoy the roads ahead. It allowed drivers to enjoy more connectivity, all while not handling their phones physically. Over the last eight years, Apple CarPlay has continually improved and allowed drivers to enjoy their favorite songs and podcasts, easy-to-use navigation, and phone calls, all while staying focused on the road. With the announcement of iOS 16, some massive upgrades will change Apple CarPlay and how it integrates within infotainment systems for years to come.

Apple CarPlay changed the game

In the beginning, not many automakers were too keen on utilizing this integration. But, they quickly realized that it was necessary to make sure buyers considered those specific models. Because of that, automakers worked not just to integrate this system into the infotainment system, but to make sure it could work seamlessly. 

One reason that Apple CarPlay has become such a popular option, and in many ways, a necessary feature, is that it allows you to connect to your favorite apps while staying hands-free. You can easily listen to music, set up a destination, have step-by-step directions, and make a call easily. Because people rely on their phones, having a way to interact with their phones safely is essential.

What big changes are coming?

the complete view of the integration of upgraded apple carplay running on all screens
The New Apple CarPlay Experience Coming at the End of 2023 | Apple

Apple has prioritized making this system work seamlessly throughout the last eight years. At Apple’s latest event, the Apple Worldwide Developer Conference, Apple introduced the latest iOS, iOS 16. With this upgrade, the functionality of Apple CarPlay is fundamentally changing for the better. Apple CarPlay will have the ability to work on every screen in the car, not just the main infotainment display. 

One of the most critical aspects of the upgraded Apple CarPlay is the increased functionality and integration it can offer. Apple CarPlay will not just mirror your phone but can work with the car’s real-time systems to handle every aspect of your vehicle. With the upgrade, Apple CarPlay can now manage functions such as:

  • Displaying speed, RPM, fuel level, mpg, and battery level for EVs and hybrids
  • Control climate systems
  • Control heated/cooled seating
  • Show navigation in the instrument cluster
  • Control the embedded radio
  • Display trim time
  • Show the weather
  • Allow for multiple widgets and custom orientation

In addition to these features, you can enjoy a unified and seamless design that brings everything together. You will be able to customize the gauge cluster with unique designs and colors, and the overall layout on each display. While all of this is available, you will still enjoy the hands-free convenience you have gotten used to.

When will this debut?

a look at some of the new functions that apple carplay can control in the infotainment system
Some of the New Functionality Found in the New Apple CarPlay | Apple via YouTube

As of right now, there is no set-in-stone date for when this update will go live. According to Apple, we know that vehicles that will be utilizing this upgrade will start being announced late in 2023. While it is still over a year away, this upgrade should be worth the wait.

Until then, keep an eye out for updates on what this system will do and what automakers will offer this level of integration.

What about the Apple Car?

the instrument cluster gauges found in apple carplay
The New Instrument Cluster View in the Upgraded Apple CarPlay | Apple via YouTube

One of the longest-rumored products from Cupertino, CA, is the Apple Car. Apple has made many hints that it is looking to get into the automotive industry. This vast upgrade to Apple CarPlay further addresses the goal of creating a modern and advanced car that would connect seamlessly to the Apple EcoSystem. While the Apple Car has not been formally announced, this upgrade could signify what is to come. 

An upgraded Apple CarPlay is a sign of the future

one of the new views available with the infotainment integration and new upgraded apple carplay
Some of the Addition Widgets Available in the Upgraded Apple CarPlay | Apple via YouTube

Apple CarPlay is one of the most popular features in modern cars. Shoppers actively seek out this technology, and this introduction of iOS 16 could be a significant upgrade. Apple’s clean and contemporary design is ideal for vehicles with the idea of minimizing distractions. With most automakers already utilizing Apple CarPlay in, it wouldn’t be surprising to see how the integration of this system becomes the industry standard within infotainment.


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