While wireless Android Auto and CarPlay were already available in some older Hyundais, new models with factory navigation were only fitted with wired support.
The carmaker has reportedly managed to settle what is referred to as a dispute with a phone manufacturer over the navigation button on the dashboard. As such, Hyundai can enable wireless Android Auto and CarPlay in all models shipping with navigation.
This is the good news. The bad news is that few models already on the road will actually get the update to enable wireless phone projection.
Hyundai's strategy is primarily aimed at upcoming models, starting with the new Kona. If you already own a Hyundai, Kia, or Genesis vehicle with factory navigation but wired Android Auto and CarPlay, the chances are you'll have to stick with a cable. Hyundai will only enable wireless mirroring for certain 2023 Kona models shipped to customers this year, but otherwise, the backward compatibility seems very limited.
This strategy certainly seems a little bizarre, especially as Hyundai has already teased the wireless phone projection update on several occasions. As I reported not long ago, Hyundai dropped a teaser on its official website that wireless mirroring is coming to its cars. Indeed, no specifics were provided, but announcing such a highly anticipated feature with much fanfare doesn’t make much sense if the rollout is eventually limited to just a handful of cars.
I've reached out to Hyundai for additional information and will update the story when and if I get an answer with additional details.
In the meantime, even if your car comes with wired phone mirroring, you can switch to wireless using a dedicated adapter. Depending on the model you choose, these devices don't cost more than $100 and convert a wired connection into wireless automatically. They plug into the USB port of your car and then connect wirelessly to your phone. The pairing must be performed just once, so the next time you get behind the wheel, Android Auto and CarPlay should start automatically on the screen without the need for cables.
Hyundai did not provide any specifics as to when it plans to release this software update, but according to a recent report, the first eligible vehicles should receive it in the fourth quarter of the year. The list of models to get the update isn't final, so fingers crossed for more cars to receive wireless phone mirroring.