Apple previewed its next-generation CarPlay system back in 2022, and now it’s almost here. The company spoke at length on the popular system during its annual worldwide developer conference, and to sum up all the tech talk in one word, it’s all about customization.

That much was already known, but now we have a clearer understanding of exactly what that means. With most new vehicles offering at least two screens, CarPlay can utilize all of them to integrate in a manner that feels like a native system to the automaker. That’s because Apple invites automakers to co-develop the interface for an on-brand experience that’s vehicle-specific. The new CarPlay is designed to be flexible, incorporating various spaces for “dynamic content” that can be filled per manufacturer needs.

This flexibility also leaves room for driver customization as well. Apple CarPlay Human Interface Designer Ben Crick speaks at length on this in the above video, detailing how everything from gauge designs to information layouts can be configured to suit individual tastes. The platform is scalable and adapts to most screen sizes and layouts. You want auxiliary gauges on the center screen? Navigation maps positioned on a passenger screen? Apple CarPlay can make that happen, so long as your car supports it.

We also learn that CarPlay integration will go far beyond snazzy gauges and entertainment. The new platform can handle vehicle systems like climate control settings, drive modes, driver-assist settings, camera controls, and more. But it doesn’t come that way out of the box. As mentioned previously, these deeper functions depend on automakers co-developing their systems to work with CarPlay. And we know some automakers aren’t interested in such things, be it CarPlay or Android Auto.

Next-Gen Apple CarPlay
Next-Gen Apple CarPlay
Next-Gen Apple CarPlay

Porsche and Aston Martin are, though. Both brands previously announced collaborations for the next-gen CarPlay on future vehicles. Beyond that, we’re still waiting for word from others. There’s no specific timeframe for when this all kicks off, but as soon as we know, you’ll know.

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Last Update: June 11, 2024

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