What is Carplay?

Carplay or Apple Carplay is an in-car infotainment system developed by Apple that allows the car's radio or stereo console to become a display and controller for iOS devices. It is available for iPhone 5 and higher models running iOS 7.1 or later, and the car must be equipped with a compatible in-car entertainment system. Most Carplay-equipped vehicles can connect to an iOS device via USB, while some vehicles can also allow the device to connect wirelessly to an iOS device, and some can add wireless support via an aftermarket dongle.

How Carplay Works?

Apple Carplay works by connecting to the user's iPhone via Bluetooth or USB and then mirroring the apps and features on the user's phone to the car's infotainment screen. Many new cars come with Apple Carplay built-in or are offered as an additional feature

How To Set Up Carplay?

Setting up Apple CarPlay is easy. Simply connect via Bluetooth or use the USB cable that connects your car to your iPhone.

  • If you choose a USB connection, simply find your car's USB data port, plug it into your iPhone, and then plug it into the USB port in your car. Once successfully plugged in, CarPlay and iPhone will pop up asking you to grant permissions on both the CarPlay screen and your iPhone, and once this is done the pairing is successful.
  • If you choose to use Bluetooth connectivity, you will need to access the Settings section of your vehicle's infotainment system and enable pairing mode. Alternatively, you can press and hold the Call or Voice Command button on the steering wheel for a few seconds. Once you've done this, go to Settings on your phone (or other Apple device) and select CarPlay in the General section. Next, select your car in the Available Cars section, which will enable your infotainment system to boot up and launch CarPlay, and then it will automatically connect to the CarPlay system every time you enter your car.

In some vehicles, CarPlay only works when your phone is connected to a specific USB port, so if your vehicle's infotainment display isn't clear on which one you should be using, check your owner's manual or speak to a professional.


Which Car Stereo Is Right For My Car?

Choosing a car stereo isn't as simple as picking one that looks the best, as most car stereos are customized for specific models, but there are exceptions. As long as you understand the difference between a single DIN car stereo and a dual DIN car stereo and have the correct dashboard, a universal car stereo should fit any car. With the correct dashboard installed, you should be able to seamlessly install a universal car stereo into the interior of almost any vehicle.

The Difference Between Single-DIN and Double-DIN Car Stereos?

Single DIN is the standard size for car stereos. The stereo slot in most cars is a single DIN. standard DIN slot dimensions are 2-1/8 inches (50 mm) high by 7-1/8 inches (180 mm) wide. Most car stereos can be installed into a single DIN slot without purchasing an additional adapter kit.

If you are not tech-savvy, you can simply measure the cavity in your vehicle and if it matches these dimensions, you have a DIN and you need a DIN universal car stereo.

However, some vehicles have a Dual DIN. In general, a Dual-DIN (also known as a 2-DIN) radio is twice the height of a standard DIN radio, i.e. 180 mm x 100 mm, or 7 x 4 inches. These are more common in modern or luxury vehicles. This extra space is used for video, reversing cameras, navigation, and a range of other uses.


Which Cars Come With Apple Carplay?

The 2016 model year marks the beginning of Apple CarPlay as a standard feature in many cars, although some models have been offering it since as early as 2014. It's important to note, however, that not all models in a particular trim level are equipped with CarPlay, and some may require the option of a more advanced configuration to take advantage of the feature.

Apple CarPlay is gradually becoming a standard or optional feature in a wide range of models. Some popular models include:

  • Audi models such as the A3, A4, Q2, R8, TT, Q5, e-tron and Q8.
  • BMW models such as the 2-series, 3-series, 6-series, 7-series, X3 and i3
  • Citroën models such as C3, C4, C5 and Berlingo
  • Mercedes-Benz A-Class, B-Class, GLA, and GLS models
  • Mini Clubman and Countryman
  • Volkswagen models such as the Golf, Polo and Tiguan
  • Volvo models such as the XC90 and XC60

Some models, such as the Fiat, may need to upgrade to a 10.25-inch infotainment system to use CarPlay, while for entry-level models such as the Suzuki, Nissan, and Dacia, you may have to pay extra to get CarPlay functionality.

What If I Don't Have An iPhone?

If you don't have an iPhone but still need a smartphone connection, there are other systems you can use. android Auto is very similar to Apple CarPlay but for Android phones. You'll still get audio and messaging features and navigation on the infotainment screen.