Pioneer brings Apple CarPlay to Australian dashboards

Pioneer announced that it will be the first after-market manufacturer to bring Apple CarPlay to the dashboards of Australian cars in 2014.

Pioneer has announced that it will be the first after-market manufacturer to bring Apple CarPlay functionality to the dashboards of Australian cars in 2014.

The car of the future: Apple's CarPlay interface. (Credit: Apple)

Apple's touch- and voice-operated in-car system mirrors the capabilities of a user's iPhone on the dashboard of a car, offering the ability to make phone calls, navigate maps and play music without having to pull out a smartphone.

CarPlay was given a test drive for the public at the Geneva Motor Show last month, though the technology was physically integrated into the dashboards of cars from the likes of Volvo, Ferrari and Mercedes-Benz. Now, Pioneer has confirmed that it will have a range of standalone head units arriving in the market in "early winter 2014" with CarPlay compatibility for iOS 7.1 devices.

The brand will launch three models, each featuring "large, in-dash Pioneer LCD displays", which will be compatible with the iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c and iPhone 5 (though the devices will require the smartphone to be connected via a Lightning to USB cable). Once connected, drivers will be able to use Siri to make and receive calls, compose text messages and use Apple Maps to navigate.

"Pioneer's years of expertise integrating smartphone connectivity into the automotive environment has provided us the opportunity to be among the first to offer CarPlay to drivers," said Chris Kotis, Pioneer Electronics Australia general manager of sales and marketing. "By providing an aftermarket option, Pioneer's 2014 in-dash multimedia systems will give many iPhone owners the ability to add CarPlay to their current vehicles."

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