Apple Working to Further Deepen CarPlay’s Integration With Support for AC, Music System, More

CarPlay - iOS 14

Apple is working on a project to further deepen CarPlay’s integration within cars. Known internally as “IronHeart,” the company wants to use CarPlay to control the AC, radio, seats, and more in a vehicle.

The project is still in its early stages, so a lot of work needs to happen before the idea turns into reality. However, it underscores how important CarPlay has become for Apple in recent years.

The Bloomberg report details that Apple wants to make it possible for iPhone users to use CarPlay to control AC temperatures, seats, armrests, change the music system settings, view data from the temperature and humidity sensors, and more. With this data, CarPlay would become the primary interface for controlling almost all aspects of the car.

Right now, CarPlay primarily offers controls related to music playback and navigation, with users needing to jump back to the infotainment system’s UI for controlling other aspects of their vehicle. Apple first launched CarPlay in 2014, and after a lukewarm response from automakers initially, it is now available across 600 different models. However, Apple’s recent moves to further improve CarPlay and integrate the iPhone with a vehicle have not really taken off.

The company announced CarKey in 2020, a feature that lets you use your iPhone or Apple Watch as a digital car key, but it only works with selected BWM vehicles. Similarly, Apple previously allowed using Siri to control selected features of a car, including changing the climate settings, audio source, etc. However, these features were removed in iOS 15 due to the lack of support from automakers.

The report states that Apple could cancel its IronHeart initiative if the features don’t show enough promise, though this is something that only time will tell. The feature could also get a lot of pushback from automakers as they would not want to provide CarPlay with access to all vehicle settings.

[Via Bloomberg]