CarPlay integration goes wireless

February 27, 2017 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Smartphone users who want display and control their apps through the head unit of their car so far needed a cable connection between the two devices. Infotainment systems provider Harman International has developed a wireless link between the two. The first customer seems to be BMW.

In Harman’s solution, a Bluetooth or WiFi connection is all the user needs to mirror his smartphone’s apps to the vehicle. The USB cable hitherto required to tie the apps to the car becomes dispensable. So far, the system is only available for Apple’s iPhone; users of Android- or Windows-based smartphones are left out. Harman’s infotainment system now enables the simultaneous operation of the respective HMI elements of head unit and CarPlay. Thus, users have access to smartphone functions like telephony, music playback, mobile office and navigation through their infotainment system. In addition, the smartphone’s voice recognition system can be used during the ride.

The wireless CarPlay integration is now available for sale to automotive OEMs, Harman announced in a press release. According to the release, the system is already implemented in a series vehicle from a premium OEM. While Harman declined to quote the name of the customer. The company however provided a photo illustrating the wireless integration scheme. On this photo, brand icon of the customer can clearly be recognized as BMW.

Related articles:

Study promises to shed light to Apple's car plans

Software connects head unit to CarPlay and Android Auto

Car radio platform reduces hardware to a minimum