Next-gen Apple CarPlay expands to gauge cluster, controls vehicle functions


Apple has been teasing a next-generation version of its CarPlay smartphone integration system since 2022, and on Monday during the company’s annual developer’s conference we got a closer look at the system that is expected to be rolled out later this year.

The biggest change will be the expansion beyond the infotainment screen. CarPlay will now take over the digital gauge cluster as well, and any other screens should they be present on the dash.

Drivers won’t have to face a generic Apple design, though. The system will feature multiple templates and detail variations that will enable automakers to customize the look to suit specific brands. Aston Martin and Porsche have already given a taste of what their specific designs will look like.

Individuals will also be able to customize what they want displayed, and on what screens. Crucially, the system will be flexible enough to fit any screen shape or size.

There will also be new apps that let users control various vehicle functions, meaning there will be no need to swap in and out of the system. Apple mentioned functions like the climate control, drive modes, electronic driver-assist features, camera monitoring, and more.

There will also be pop-up notifications, Apple said. An example could be an indication of charge status or remaining charge time in an electric vehicle.

CarPlay will still rely on a connected iPhone to share app-related data, but integration with the gauge cluster will be made possible by a secure connection that allows CarPlay to communicate in real time with in-vehicle systems. So things like speed, rpm, and fuel level can be displayed without interruption.



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