One More Carmaker Confirms Support for Android Auto and CarPlay

Fisker planning to bring Android Auto and CarPlay to its cars 7 photos
Photo: Bogdan Popa/autoevolution/Fisker
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The adoption of Android Auto and CarPlay has reached record levels, allowing drivers to use mobile apps installed on their phones on the bigger screens in the cabin.
Apple claims nearly 80 percent of the new-car buyers in the United States wouldn't even consider a model without CarPlay, and the stats are likely real. GM's decision to drop CarPlay support sparked massive criticism in the United States, where many potential customers claimed they would ditch the brand for their next purchase.

The CarPlay and Android Auto revolution

Fisker expects to start Ocean deliveries in April
Photo: Fisker
Most carmakers adopted Android Auto and CarPlay to deal with drivers' complaints regarding their lazy software implementations.

The strategy made sense, as Android Auto and CarPlay addressed the essential need behind the wheel. Users could finally listen to music and have up-to-date navigation, giving up on their vehicles' terrible sat-nav and media app integration.

Android Auto and CarPlay have since evolved significantly, though they still couldn't get past a barrier that's now unlocked with the introduction of Android Automotive and the new-generation CarPlay.

The current versions can't access vehicle data, so the existing implementations are still very limited. It's the reason always invoked by General Motors for dropping Android Auto and CarPlay.

However, Android Auto and CarPlay continue to be extremely popular, and a new carmaker has just confirmed that it plans to adopt the two services.

Fisker to bring Android Auto and CarPlay to its models

Fisker confirms Android Auto and CarPlay support
Photo: Bogdan Popa/autoevolution
Fisker has been rumored to bring CarPlay to its lineup for quite some time, but the carmaker hasn't shared any information on this strategy lately.

Many believed Fisker would stick with the same approach as the likes of Tesla and Rivian, both of which focus on their software solutions rather than phone mirroring systems from Google and Apple.

A Fisker customer recently asked the company if Android Auto and CarPlay are still on the table, and the answer was disappointing. "Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are not features we are currently working on," a representative said in a response. The Fisker official also said the focus is on improving "our infotainment and UI system," suggesting the carmaker will follow the same direction as Tesla and Rivian.

The good news is that Fisker did not completely reject the idea of adopting Android Auto and CarPlay. The company representative claimed that Fisker would consider the addition of the two systems if customers asked for them.

A few days later, a Fisker representative took to reddit to "update the answer." They claim the original response was "based on old information" and that Fisker is "looking into Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

The carmaker did not share any other specifics, so while Android Auto and CarPlay are on their way to Fisker models, it's impossible to tell when the new features will land.

The push for and against Android Auto and CarPlay

Fisker expects to start Ocean deliveries in April
Photo: Fisker
Tesla and Rivian aren't the only carmakers insisting on a future without Android Auto and CarPlay.

General Motors recently joined the anti-Android Auto and CarPlay battle by switching to Android Automotive in future EVs. The new strategy comes into effect with the 2024 Blazer EV and will continue with all new zero-emission vehicles to launch in the coming years.

Eventually, General Motors will switch to Android Automotive entirely, as the carmaker has already set an ambitious target of dropping combustion engines by 2035. As a result, Android Auto and CarPlay will be replaced by Android Automotive in all GM's vehicles.

On the other hand, several other carmakers have already expressed their commitment to offering Android Auto and CarPlay in their future models. Honda, Ford, and others confirmed they have no plans to abandon the two systems despite some models adopting Android Automotive.

Compared to Android Auto and CarPlay, Android Automotive and the next-generation CarPlay offer deeper integration into the vehicle, reading additional data and, therefore, providing more advanced functionality. For example, Android Automotive is deeply connected to the vehicle's systems, so Google Maps can read battery information and the estimated range. Google Maps can automatically suggest charging stops when the existing battery level doesn't allow the driver to reach the destination.

Google Assistant also allows drivers to control additional features with voice commands. This deeper integration allows users to adjust the air conditioning system hands-free. These features aren't available on Android Auto and CarPlay because the experience runs on the mobile device, and it can't access the vehicle's functions.

Other carmakers, such as Porsche, have tried to offer more advanced functionality by integrating the CarPlay experience into their mobile companion apps. With this method, Porsche allows drivers to adjust more vehicle functions from the infotainment system.

Android Automotive is already available in many cars on the road, while Apple will unveil the new-generation CarPlay later this year. The first models launching with CarPlay 2.0 should become available for buyers in 2024, with Apple to share more details later this month or in November.
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About the author: Bogdan Popa
Bogdan Popa profile photo

Bogdan keeps an eye on how technology is taking over the car world. His long-term goals are buying an 18-wheeler because he needs more space for his kid’s toys, and convincing Google and Apple that Android Auto and CarPlay deserve at least as much attention as their phones.
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