Roadshow Video Reviews
2018 Toyota Camry Hybrid resists CarPlay and Android AutoToyota thinks it's in your interest to shun Google and Apple.
[MUSIC] Now your screen inventory on this new Camry is almost kind of conservative by comparison to many cars today. You've got this four inch helper screen between the gauges, that's nothing new on a Toyota. Over here check out the new look on n tune. N tune is their head unit software, and now it's in generation 3, kinda like 4 is on sink 3. The look is a little different. You got a really nice single glass panel head unit right here. That's very sleek. I'll say this, I'm really glad they've got a real volume knob. Thank you, Toyota for keeping your head on your shoulders. On the other hand, who the hell thought up these eight buttons on the left and right? They're kinda like pressing the edges of dull knives. Who thought that was gonna feel comfortable? And they're kinda hard to land on, cuz they're skinny, not good. Now onto the content of the system itself. Once we get into this you realize it's very app-centric. And the most robust example of that is the fact that on all but a few cars, navigation's not built in. You have to bring it in via your phone, using the Scout Navigation app, which is a separate product. This comes in through another app, which is the Entune Connect app on your phone. Which bonds your phone to the headunit. There's a lot of app connectivity here. Because also each of your accounts here have to be registered through Intune so things like Pandora or iHeart will actually open up when you press them. It's a lot of initial setup. Once you get it going it should be robust. Now, what you're not going to see here, no matter what trim Camry you pick up, is Car Play or Android Auto. Toyota is just about the last big car maker to not embrace those two smart phone centric platforms. I think it's a false move. I think they'll eventually have to come around. Because as well done as this is, relatively speaking, it's still dumb when it comes to my history, my preferences, all that rich data that Apple and Google can bring to bear. And the voice recognition is just not as good as what's on your phone, not even close. Toyota justifies avoiding car plan Android auto by saying that one, a head unit should be fully integrated into all of the car's other systems which Android and car plan are not, two, they like rolling their own here because it allows them to control the use of your private data better and three, they also say with this system you are never bouncing between two interfaces. factory and car player android auto, which is absolutely true. That is really tedious in cars out there that have it. But I just never bounce, I just stay in car player, in my case android auto. Once you Piece within tune. The apps that are available are nothing really that are new or dramatically different which is good. I want the hits, I want the favorites in my care. What I don't need is nonsense like this, do not give me a stupid app for stocks, what are you kidding? Now on the audio side they're doing something interesting. They're admitting or acknowledging that most of our modern sources are crap, compressed MP3s, compressed satellite radio streams, and compressed streams on music apps. So they've got something in here called clarified it's a JBL technology. That supposedly listens to the audio streams finds out what was taken out And synthetically bumps it back in. It's like the upscaling your television does to go from standard def disks to an HD display. Obviously, it's putting in information it doesn't really have. There's no A/B switch to turn it on or off,so I can only tell you the system sounds good, but I don't know how good it would sound without it. Beyond infotainment, Intune 3 is now also a remote control device for things like starting your car, locking it, or doing remote status checks like fuel level, mileage, or battery charge. Now all Toyota Camry hybrids now are upholstered with what they call Softex leather. It's not leather at all. It's a synthetic leather that Toyota says is lighter than leather. That's important in a car like this. Has 99% fewer volatile organic compounds, those nasty chemical smells you get. In new car upholstery. I know, new car smell, but it's not good for you. And it's also harder wearing and softer to the touch, they say. There is a hotspot function available on the 18 Camry. You can hook up the usual five or so in-car devices to it as you drive. What's becoming rather common these days is wireless charging, we have a wireless charging pad here, it's actually integrated cleverly into a binacle [UNKNOWN], so you put your phone right there and then there's a power switch to enable this and if you got a phone with the [UNKNOWN] charging standard built into it or a case that has that You'll charge as you drive. Just know that with all wireless charging when you lift it off to glance at it, which I guess you shouldn't do anyway, it stops charging. And wireless charging tends to be slow, less efficient. [MUSIC] [BLANK_AUDIO]