Apple, in partnership with leading automakers, is rolling out CarPlay — a safer alternative for using your iPhone while operating a vehicle.
The service opens the world of phone calls, GPS navigation, music, and messaging to drivers via a voice command or quick tap. Compatible with participating vehicles' native interface, CarPlay makes it easy to access Siri without interruption.
"CarPlay has been designed from the ground up to provide drivers with an incredible experience using their iPhone in the car," Greg Joswiak, Apple vice president of iPhone and iOS product marketing, said in a statement. "IPhone users always want their content at their fingertips and CarPlay lets drivers use their iPhone in the car with minimized distraction."
Once connected in your car, Siri can access your contacts, make phone calls, return missed calls, and listen to voicemails. Expecting a text while traveling? Don't fret: When new messages or notifications arrive, the phone reads the driver's messages and allows them to dictate a response.
But in true Apple fashion, there's more. CarPlay also works with Apple Maps (there is no word on Google Maps compatibility) to anticipate destinations based on recent trips, contacts, emails, or texts, and also provides routing instructions, traffic conditions, and ETA. Siri is also kind enough to provide spoken turn-by-turn directions, as well as GPS navigation, which will appear on the car's built-in display.
CarPlay also allows access to the user's music, podcasts, audiobooks, and iTunes Radio. Apple's partnerships with third-party audio apps include Spotify and iHeartRadio listening.
Available as an update to iOS 7 with Lightning-enabled devices, including the iPhone 5, iPhone 5c, and iPhone 5s—CarPlay will make its debut in select cars shipping this year, including Ferrari, Mercedes-Benz, and Volvo.
BMW, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Hyundai, Jaguar, Land Rover, Kia, Mitsubishi, Nissan, PSA Peugeot Citroen, Subaru, Suzuki, and Toyota customers will soon gain access as well, Apple said.
"We have an amazing lineup of auto partners rolling out CarPlay. And we're thrilled it will make its debut this week in Geneva," Joswiak said.
The first glimpse of this technology came when Apple introduced iOS in the Car at its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in June 2013. Last month, the tech giant released two videos by Apple developers which show off the technology's ability to make phone calls, play music, go to Maps, and get iMessages on the car's screen.