According to the latest report, Apple previewed its new CarPlay system vision at WWDC22 and announced some early partners, but there are still some notable stickers that have yet to participate. During its Developer Conference keynote, Apple previewed a new generation of CarPlay, which brings a whole new level of customization to a car’s infotainment system, instrumentation, and more.
The iPhone maker also released a list of automakers “excited to bring CarPlay’s new vision to customers,” including many legacy car companies such as Honda, Ford, and Mercedes-Benz. However, BMW is clearly not on the list. There are other companies, like Tesla, that have never adopted CarPlay.
BMW’s relationship with Apple CarPlay has always been odd. Even before the feature debuted, company executives said their vehicles didn’t support Apple’s infotainment system. The company eventually changed course and made CarPlay available on select models starting in 2016.
The German automaker continues to offer CarPlay as a regular package option to customers until 2019 when it charges an $80 annual subscription fee for customers to use the service. As with slow adoption, BMW is the only major automaker considering such a fee. As expected, customers were not happy. BMW finally dropped the fee in 2019.
Recent news even highlights the weirdness of BMW’s CarPlay, including that it may launch new models without Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. The automaker blamed an ongoing chip shortage for the problem, but other automakers don’t appear to be following suit.
The German company was also an early adopter of Apple technology. It is the first company to announce support for Apple’s CarKey system, which will allow users to unlock or start their vehicles with their iPhone. All of this suggests that BMW’s lack of early involvement could mean the company will repeat the mistakes of CarPlay.
However, BMW doesn’t seem to be totally against the idea of eventually adopting an upgraded version of CarPlay. In a statement to The Verge, BMW said it still needs to evaluate how to integrate Apple’s announcement.
“At this time, we have a clear focus on further enhancing our iDrive user interface system and will continue to integrate seamlessly with Apple’s ecosystem as part of this development,” BMW said. “Part of these efforts will be evaluating how WWDC22 will integrate The latest innovations announced last year are integrated into our solutions.”
In other words, BMW is hedging its bets. It’s not an early partner for the new CarPlay, but if trends are good, it could eventually feature next-gen system features.
Tesla isn’t a traditional automaker, but its weight in the market rivals that of rivals like Ford or General Motors. Unlike other automakers, however, Tesla has never supported Apple CarPlay. As a technology company, Tesla writes its own software for its in-vehicle infotainment system. That’s probably the main reason why it doesn’t support Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, or other tech companies’ products.
The company is stubborn, so it may come at a cost. According to statistics released by Apple, 79% of U.S. car buyers would not even consider buying a car without CarPlay. CarPlay is designed to provide a seamless experience for iPhone users. Apple’s iOS smartphones continue to dominate the market in terms of the time of year. The company’s high-end target market also largely overlaps with Tesla.
Most other automakers plan to release electric vehicles that could compete more closely with Tesla. Looking back at the statistics provided by Apple, when CarPlay’s uniqueness starts to wane, the adoption of CarPlay could be good for Tesla’s demand.
It may also be more convenient for the user. The Apple and Google ecosystem has the advantage of millions of developers something Tesla doesn’t currently have and probably never will. With CarPlay, Tesla drivers have immediate access to a host of new audio, messaging, and streaming apps. Whether Tesla will change its mind about Apple CarPlay remains to be seen. However, from the outside, the latest adopted words seem like a good idea.