Add Apple CarPlay to your present journey with Pioneer’s newest head models
In case you’re an iPhone consumer who’s dying to check out the brand new auto-pleasant CarPlay interface, however cannot fairly shell out the large bucks for a brand new Ferrari, Pioneer has excellent news for you: It lately introduced that each one of its 2014 NEX head models will probably be CarPlay-suitable. Certainly, should you already bought one in every of Pioneer’s 5 aftermarket receiver fashions that have been launched earlier this yr, you can also have CarPlay with a easy firmware replace that is popping out in a couple of months. I had the chance to see this in motion with a Pioneer AVIC-8000NEX put in in a Toyota Sienna a pair days in the past, and it is precisely how it will seem in a automotive with CarPlay already inbuilt.
All it’s essential to get began is to plug your iPhone (it must be one with a Lightning cable) to the NEX unit and the CarPlay interface will seem. Simply as we noticed on the Geneva Auto Present in March, CarPlay’s interface mirrors that of iOS, even proper right down to the app icons. You will get entry to the options that you really want most whenever you’re driving round — voice calls, messaging, maps and music. The latter consists of your iTunes library, in fact, however CarPlay may even help third-get together audio apps like iHeartRadio and Spotify at launch. Interacting with apps on the Pioneer head unit is identical as with a constructed-in system — you’ll be able to both faucet the display or hit a button to activate Siri voice instructions.
Ted Cardenas, Pioneer’s VP of selling, took me on somewhat drive round San Francisco to get an actual-world really feel for CarPlay. What stunned me probably the most concerning the expertise was how Siri actually comes into its personal as a approach to cope with your telephone whereas within the automotive. As an iPhone consumer, I am going to admit I virtually by no means use Siri, preferring as an alternative to only faucet, swipe and sort on the touchscreen. In fact, in a automotive, that is a really unwise factor to do, which makes Siri invaluable. You possibly can play music by saying, “Play,” after which the identify of a music; make calls just by saying, “Name,” adopted by the individual’s identify; and say, “Learn unread messages,” to immediate Siri to do exactly that.
Whenever you get a brand new message, CarPlay will briefly mute the music you are listening to and you will hear a slight, unobtrusive ping. From there, you’ll be able to faucet the brand new-message banner, at which level Siri will inform you who it is from. To make sure security, CarPlay won’t ever show the complete message on the display and defaults to Siri studying it out to you. From there, you’ll be able to reply to the message by saying one thing like, “Inform John I am operating late.”
And since Siri enables you to use pure language, getting instructions to a spot is as straightforward as saying, “How do I get to,” adopted by the identify of your vacation spot. In comparison with most in-automotive methods, the place you must comply with a strict voice script, like including your metropolis and state and having to spell out an tackle, Siri appears much more consumer-pleasant. And since Siri is related to your telephone, you need to use it for different features too. Cardenas demonstrated you can faucet the Siri button to request reminders or ask for the newest scores of a baseball recreation.
There are a number of essential caveats, nevertheless. For one factor, Pioneer’s NEX models will not slot in each automotive. Automobiles that combine local weather management with leisure, for instance, might be troublesome to accommodate. Additional, some automobiles have steering wheel buttons that may be mapped to immediate Siri, whereas others do not. You will nonetheless be capable of use the touchscreen and the buttons on the Pioneer head unit, so it isn’t a complete loss, however the NEX’s compatibility together with your automotive’s selector and quantity controls can differ from producer to producer.
Final however not least, the Pioneer NEX receivers usually are not low cost. The most cost effective — the AVH-4000NEX — will value you near $seven hundred, whereas the highest-of-the-line AVIC-8000NEX is priced round $1,four hundred retail. That stated, $1,four hundred continues to be much more reasonably priced than getting a shiny, new luxurious automotive from Ferrari, Mercedes or Volvo, particularly if all you need is CarPlay. Pioneer tells us that in the event you purchased a brand new NEX unit already, you possibly can replace it with a easy USB persist with get CarPlay, however in the event you wait till later within the yr to get one — we’re listening to “early summer time” — it’s going to already be pre-put in. Till then, we propose you peruse by means of the gallery above or view our palms-on under from the Geneva Auto Present to see if CarPlay is value ready for.