General Motors will become the latest automaker to offer Apple CarPlay and Android Auto when it launches the industry’s broadest deployment the smartphone integration technologies on Chevrolet vehicles in select global markets this summer.
“For most of us, our smartphones are essential,” GM CEO Mary Barra says in a statement. “Partnering with Apple and Google to offer CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility across the widest range of models in the industry is a great example of how Chevrolet continues to democratize technology that’s important to our customers.”
Apple CarPlay and Android Auto will bow June 24 in the U.S. on the redesigned ’16 Chevy Cruze compact car, followed by 13 other models representing 2.4 million sales, or 51% of the brand’s global deliveries.
Both providers will be available with Chevy models using a 7-in. (18-cm) MyLink touchscreen, GM says. Chevy cars and trucks with an 8-in. (20-cm) MyLink touchscreen will launch with Apple CarPlay, followed later in the model year by Android Auto after additional testing is complete.
Android Auto uses Google Maps, Google Now and the ability to talk to Google, as well as audio and messaging software applications including WhatsApp, Skype, Google Play Music, Spotify and podcast players.
Apple CarPlay puts iPhone features on the MyLink display giving drivers access to smartphone calls, messages and music with the option of using Siri voice commands. It also supports apps for the phone, messages, maps, music and third-party apps.
GM says 2.3 billion global smartphone users demanding better integration of the devices to their vehicles drives the addition of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto to its products.
However, a recent survey from J.D. Power shows a lack of interest in the technologies across generations. J.D. Power blames the lackluster take rate on the fact many automakers up to this point have offered either one instead of both, which GM will do with its deployment.
“The solution for (non-luxury) brands may be to offer both operating systems and allow customers to select the option best suited for them,” Kristin Kolodge, executive director-driver interaction & HMI research at J.D. Power, said in the consultant’s April 2015 popular technologies study.
Smartphone data rates will apply to the use of either Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, but integration of the technologies with a Chevy vehicle will no cost extra. Most of the brand’s cars and trucks come with a 7-in. touchscreen as standard equipment, with the exception of some base-model pickups.