Apple Looking to Expand CarPlay With New Integrations for AC, Seats, Instrument Cluster, and More

Apple is looking to expand CarPlay's functionality to include controls for core car functions such as the air conditioning system, radio, speedometer, seats, and more, according to a new report from Bloomberg.

carplay dashboard ios 14
The project, internally codenamed "IronHeart," is still in its early stages but would include Apple working with carmakers to expand ‌CarPlay‌'s functionality to control core car functions. Beyond apps for music and navigation, ‌CarPlay‌ doesn't let users control any aspect of the car itself. This new iPhone-based project would be looking to change that.

The company is working on technology that would access functions like the climate-control system, speedometer, radio and seats, according to people with knowledge of the effort. The initiative, known as "IronHeart" internally, is still in its early stages and would require the cooperation of automakers.

IronHeart would take CarPlay a step further. The iPhone-based system could access a range of controls, sensors and settings, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the project is secret.

The report lists several different car functions that ‌CarPlay‌ could display in the future, including inside and outside temperature and humidity readings, seats and armrests, instrument cluster, and controls for the cars built-in speakers.

Bloomberg says Apple's ‌CarPlay‌ strategy is similar to that of its Home and Health offerings, where the company has consolidated users' information into single apps on their iPhone. With "IronHeart," ‌CarPlay‌ would be a more comprehensive system for users to control their vehicle without having to switch between ‌CarPlay‌ and the car's control system.

Ultimately, while Apple is rumored to be building its own car, ‌CarPlay‌ and any of its plans would require the cooperation of carmakers. As today's report notes, Apple has struggled to convince some carmakers to adopt certain features of ‌CarPlay‌ into their vehicles.

IronHeart would represent Apple's strongest push into cars since CarPlay was released in 2014, but it may not be a hit with automakers. They could be reluctant to hand over control of key features to Apple. While CarPlay is now in more than 600 car models, other Apple initiatives launched in recent years have been slower to catch on with automakers.

But automakers have mostly balked at adding these enhancements. The climate control and radio apps are only supported by a few cars. And the EV routing feature isn't available on any vehicles that are currently shipping. The CarPlay display expansion is only supported by a few brands, such as BMW and Volkswagen, and CarKey is just on some BMWs.

Apple recently tapped Kevin Lynch, who was previously an important part of developing watchOS, to lead the Apple Car team, but following several departures, doubts are starting to arise about whether Apple will ever release its own vehicle.

Related Roundup: CarPlay

Top Rated Comments

haruhiko Avatar
34 months ago
Hey Siri please lower the temperature.
Siri: I’ve found the following about lover in the temple on the web. Do you want me to read them out?
Score: 30 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Kylo83 Avatar
34 months ago
For a start just have the caller ui not take up the whole screen and ruin the sat nav
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
4jasontv Avatar
34 months ago
I’m surprised the EU hasn’t required that all cars support CarPlay and Android auto. The auto manufacture has a monopoly with the onboard infotainment system.
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
deviant Avatar
34 months ago

That's all well and good, I just wish it was wireless in my Tucson.
You think you do, and I thought so, too.. but it’s eating the battery like c-r-a-z-y. For very short trips it’s ok. For long trips i always plug it in.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
el-John-o Avatar
34 months ago

Microsoft did this first with Ford in 2007. Ford Sync....
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ford_Sync
There are three huge issues with integrated infotainment.

1. Infotainment is usually developed fairly early in a 3-5 year car development cycle.

2. It is rarely updated during a specific vehicles generation (often 5-7 years)

3. The average age of a car on the road in the U.S. is 13 years.

If you go out and buy a brand new car, the stereo is 3+ years old already. If it's the 3rd or 4th year of that generation, it's 7 years old. The saving grace of CarPlay is that at least the software stays up to date, because these manufacturers rarely meaningfully update their systems. Navigation especially. You get the privilege of paying for a once a year unreliable map update and by the time your car needs its first oil change (okay that's a tiny bit of an exaggeration but not much), they've already discontinued it and you can't even buy more updates.

CarPlay is a killer feature (even if it's imperfect in implementation) mostly because the device in your pocket is likely newer than the car you're driving, and it definitely has newer software. So adding to that the functionalities of the car itself means drivers don't have to use the OEM software for anything if they don't want to.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Damian83 Avatar
34 months ago
Whats the point of having functions i already have on the on-board infotainment? A cool idea will be a carplay connected to obd for real-time HP, Nm, g-meter etc.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iOS 17

iOS 17.5 Bug May Also Resurface Deleted Photos on Wiped, Sold Devices [Updated]

Friday May 17, 2024 12:24 pm PDT by
A bug in iOS 17.5 is apparently causing photos that have been deleted to reappear, and the issue seems to impact even iPhones and iPads that have been erased and sold off to other people. A Reddit user wiped an iPad following Apple's guidelines in September of 2023 before selling it off to a friend. That friend updated the iPad to iPadOS 17.5 this week, and began seeing the Reddit user's old ...
iphone se 4 modified flag edges

When to Expect the Next iPhone SE to Launch

Friday May 17, 2024 2:03 pm PDT by
It has been over two years since Apple released the third-generation iPhone SE, and rumors continue to surface about a new model. The latest word comes from The Information, which today reported that Apple plans to release a new iPhone SE with a design similar to the standard iPhone 14 in the spring of 2025. If this rumor is accurate, the iPhone SE would finally gain Face ID and a notch...
oled m4 ipad pro grainy display reports

OLED iPad Pro Users Report 'Grainy' Displays, But It May Not Be a Defect

Friday May 17, 2024 5:57 am PDT by
Some new M4 iPad Pro models are exhibiting a visible static grain pattern across the OLED display, according to several user reports on Reddit (1, 2, 3) and the MacRumors Forums. Image credit: MacRumors user bk215 Users who see the grain generally report that it is most noticeable in dark environments with the display set at a low to medium brightness while viewing content with gray or muted...
iOS 17

Troubling iOS 17.5 Bug Reportedly Resurfacing Old Deleted Photos

Wednesday May 15, 2024 5:29 am PDT by
There are concerning reports on Reddit that Apple's latest iOS 17.5 update has introduced a bug that causes old photos that were deleted – in some cases years ago – to reappear in users' photo libraries. After updating their iPhone, one user said they were shocked to find old NSFW photos that they deleted in 2021 suddenly showing up in photos marked as recently uploaded to iCloud. Other...
Delta Hands On Feature

iPhone Emulators on the App Store: Game Boy, N64, PS1, PSP, and More

Thursday May 16, 2024 12:45 pm PDT by
In April, Apple updated its guidelines to allow retro game emulators on the App Store, and several popular emulators have already been released. The emulators released so far allow iPhone users to play games released for older consoles from Nintendo, Sony, SEGA, Atari, and others. A list of some popular emulators available on the App Store so far follows. Released Delta Delta is...
iphone 15 pro max vs iphone 16 pro max

iPhone 16 Pro Max Looks This Much Bigger Beside iPhone 15 Pro Max

Thursday May 16, 2024 4:51 am PDT by
This year's upcoming iPhone 16 Pro Max is expected to get a boost in overall size from 6.7-inches to 6.9-inches, and a new image gives us a good idea of how the current iPhone 15 Pro Max compares to what could be Apple's largest ever iPhone. The image above, posted on X by ZONEofTECH, shows a dummy model representing the ‌iPhone 16 Pro‌ Max alongside an actual iPhone 15 Pro Max. Dummy...