Pandora joins shortlist of iPhone apps ready for Apple's CarPlay

Posted:
in iPhone edited October 2015
Streaming music service Pandora has quietly updated its iPhone app with support for Apple's CarPlay, giving listeners a more convenient interface for compatible vehicles and aftermarket headunits.




CarPlay functions are unmentioned in Pandora's release notes, or even on Apple's website, but should nevertheless be available when an iPhone connects to a vehicle. After selecting the app from the homescreen, users should see a simplified menu with premade stations, as well as the option to shuffle all of them for variety.

A Now Playing window offers menu options to vote a track up or down, despite the potential distraction to drivers.

Relatively few iPhone apps have introduced support for CarPlay since the platform launched in 2014. Apart from a few Apple apps, like Maps and Music, some examples include Spotify, Rdio, and Overcast.

Part of the problem is that relatively few vehicles even support the standard. Automakers like Honda, Porsche, Chevrolet, and Volkswagen are now on board, but typically only in select 2016 models. Older cars can be upgraded via headunits from Alpine, Kenwood, or Pioneer, but these cost several hundred dollars each plus installation expenses.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 17
    dachardachar Posts: 330member
    I seem to remember more than 1 year ago a few manufacturers saying that they would introduce CarPlay for 2015 models. One year on and it appears very few mass market cars have CarPlay as standard. Not sure if this just as the lead in times for changes to car production are so long or if there are other reasons for CarPals slow appearance.
  • Reply 2 of 17
    So if I need a car sometime soon, should I buy a current car that supports CarPlay, or wait a few years for the Apple Car? Fun choices...
  • Reply 3 of 17

    Call me crazy but I am still unconvinced by paying to have all of this stuff integrated into the head unit.

     

    If I were buying a brand new car today, which is unlikely since its price drops like a rock the second you drive it off the lot. I would pass on CarPlay, Android Auto, or any integrated navigation system unless they were free or cheaper than not having them.

     

    As long as the car allows for connecting the phone to the stereo over blue tooth, my phone can easily handle everything these dash systems do. And I am already used to exactly how it works and where everything I need is located. The touch screens on these head units are almost always abysmal as well. If I need directions I regularly look them up on my phone before I even enter the vehicle. Additionally I almost always plug my phone in as I place it in its little holder every time I get in the car if its a trip longer than a few minutes.

     

    I am not sold on much of this in-dash stuff other than a decent radio that sounds great and can connect via blue tooth to control music and calls, and tell me when/where the next turn is. Which is all coming from my phone.

  • Reply 4 of 17
    mazda 3smazda 3s Posts: 1,566member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by TechLover View Post

     

    Call me crazy but I am still unconvinced by paying to have all of this stuff integrated into the head unit.

     

    If I were buying a brand new car today, which is unlikely since its price drops like a rock the second you drive it off the lot. I would pass on CarPlay, Android Auto, or any integrated navigation system unless they were free or cheaper than not having them.

     

    As long as the car allows for connecting the phone to the stereo over blue tooth, my phone can easily handle everything these dash systems do. And I am already used to exactly how it works and where everything I need is located. The touch screens on these head units are almost always abysmal as well. If I need directions I regularly look them up on my phone before I even enter the vehicle. Additionally I almost always plug my phone in as I place it in its little holder every time I get in the car if its a trip longer than a few minutes.

     

    I am not sold on much of this in-dash stuff other than a decent radio that sounds great and can connect via blue tooth to control music and calls, and tell me when/where the next turn is. Which is all coming from my phone.


     

    I tend to agree. The only app I would ever want with CarPlay would be to have Waze (my navigation app of choice), and there's no chance in hell of that happening.

  • Reply 5 of 17
    vmarksvmarks Posts: 670editor
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Dachar View Post



    I seem to remember more than 1 year ago a few manufacturers saying that they would introduce CarPlay for 2015 models. One year on and it appears very few mass market cars have CarPlay as standard. Not sure if this just as the lead in times for changes to car production are so long or if there are other reasons for CarPals slow appearance.



    Nope. They're in 2016 cars. Porsche, Chevrolet, Cadillac, and more. 

     

    A lot of car companies were satisfied with MFI that got song/artist/album on the dash, going full touchscreen is a reach they're getting used to.

  • Reply 6 of 17
    vmarksvmarks Posts: 670editor
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Mazda 3s View Post

     

     

    I tend to agree. The only app I would ever want with CarPlay would be to have Waze (my navigation app of choice), and there's no chance in hell of that happening.


     

    Waze audio comes over the speakers in CarPlay, just as it would for your Bluetooth or aux cable system in car.

     

    Waze does work with Pioneer app radio so you can use the touch screen to control and see Waze on the dashboard. The touchscreens on these units are not abysmal. They're very, very good. The problem is really, the apps you want to use. 

     

    I navigate with AppleMaps on CarPlay, and sometimes, I'll enter the destination on the phone connected while at a stoplight rather than use the touchscreen, but either way works well for entry. I occasionally use Waze when I know I'm going to hit traffic and I want to re-route on the fly. I still use CarPlay, and let it handle the car audio while Waze offers voice guidance.

  • Reply 7 of 17
    vmarksvmarks Posts: 670editor
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TechLover View Post

     

    Call me crazy but I am still unconvinced by paying to have all of this stuff integrated into the head unit.

     

    If I were buying a brand new car today, which is unlikely since its price drops like a rock the second you drive it off the lot. I would pass on CarPlay, Android Auto, or any integrated navigation system unless they were free or cheaper than not having them.

     

    As long as the car allows for connecting the phone to the stereo over blue tooth, my phone can easily handle everything these dash systems do. And I am already used to exactly how it works and where everything I need is located. The touch screens on these head units are almost always abysmal as well. If I need directions I regularly look them up on my phone before I even enter the vehicle. Additionally I almost always plug my phone in as I place it in its little holder every time I get in the car if its a trip longer than a few minutes.

     

    I am not sold on much of this in-dash stuff other than a decent radio that sounds great and can connect via blue tooth to control music and calls, and tell me when/where the next turn is. Which is all coming from my phone.




    Crazy.

     

    :-)

     

    The built in units aren't great for interface. Sure, they function. They're made by Delphi, AC DELCO, Blaupunkt, etc. All the unbranded stuff is made by those guys and guys like them. The Bose logo in cars? It's licensed. JBL has a real car program...

     

    The touchscreens in CarPlay and android auto systems are good. I don't know why you think they're abysmal. Can you say more about this?

     

    I would rather have Apple or Google handle the interface for the car dashboard than leave it to the traditional car audio manufacturers that car manufacturers buy in. 

  • Reply 8 of 17
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by vmarks View Post

     

    Crazy.

     

    :-)

     

    The built in units aren't great for interface. Sure, they function. They're made by Delphi, AC DELCO, Blaupunkt, etc. All the unbranded stuff is made by those guys and guys like them. The Bose logo in cars? It's licensed. JBL has a real car program...

     

    The touchscreens in CarPlay and android auto systems are good. I don't know why you think they're abysmal. Can you say more about this?

     

    I would rather have Apple or Google handle the interface for the car dashboard than leave it to the traditional car audio manufacturers that car manufacturers buy in. 


    To be fair I am a little bit crazy, not gonna lie. 

     

    Thanks for your input in this post and your last post. I have not used Carplay or Android Auto yet so its nice to get some input from someone who has. I can't speak to their touchscreens. But I absolutely agree that I would rather Apple/Google handle the interface over the the traditional guys.

     

    Regarding my abysmal touchscreen remark, I have only used factory stuff. I understand that they in general they are resistive so you can wear gloves in the winter for example. So they don't have that nice quality capacitive glass feel that we are all used to. But, they also don't have the glare of a capacitive glass screen as far as I have seen, which is nice. That is fair enough.

     

    But I have been in probably over a dozen 2015 vehicles or so and just too many others to count from previous years. And almost always the touch screens are just not good at all. The screens themselves are almost always fairly low resolution and do not feel good. Sometimes I feel like I am going to break them with the lightest touch as I see the display change color under the pressure of my finger. The touch targets are often small and non-responsive (see above where I agree with you about Apple/Google doing better interfaces). And overall I find them to be more of a bother than a help.

     

    Then again I am a crazy knob person ;) I'll take a knob any day over a button for things like volume/tuning, fan speed/temperature/zone, etc. The buttons I do like are things like volume/tuning buttons located on the steering wheel. That is a great use for buttons. But in some cars the amount of stuff they have put on the steering wheel nowadays is almost overwhelming. It can take a little getting used to.

     

    Now get off my lawn! :)

  • Reply 9 of 17
    nolamacguynolamacguy Posts: 4,758member
    slprescott wrote: »
    So if I need a car sometime soon, should I buy a current car that supports CarPlay, or wait a few years for the Apple Car? Fun choices...

    or, just buy an aftermarket head unit that supports CarPlay today. several to chose from.
  • Reply 10 of 17
    nolamacguynolamacguy Posts: 4,758member
    techlover wrote: »
    Call me crazy but I am still unconvinced by paying to have all of this stuff integrated into the head unit.

    If I were buying a brand new car today, which is unlikely since its price drops like a rock the second you drive it off the lot. I would pass on CarPlay, Android Auto, or any integrated navigation system unless they were free or cheaper than not having them.

    As long as the car allows for connecting the phone to the stereo over blue tooth, my phone can easily handle everything these dash systems do. And I am already used to exactly how it works and where everything I need is located. The touch screens on these head units are almost always abysmal as well. If I need directions I regularly look them up on my phone before I even enter the vehicle. Additionally I almost always plug my phone in as I place it in its little holder every time I get in the car if its a trip longer than a few minutes.

    I am not sold on much of this in-dash stuff other than a decent radio that sounds great and can connect via blue tooth to control music and calls, and tell me when/where the next turn is. Which is all coming from my phone.

    yeah, youre crazy. wired sound is better than BT, but even that aside, the simple fact that looking at a big 7" screen for nav rather than a small cell screen is pretty much a common sense thing -- bigger is better.

    theres absolutely no reason to prefer using your phone than integrating w/ a modern head unit, other than preferring the familiar.
  • Reply 11 of 17
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by NolaMacGuy View Post

     
    yeah, youre crazy. wired sound is better than BT, but even that aside, the simple fact that looking at a big 7" screen for nav rather than a small cell screen is pretty much a common sense thing -- bigger is better.



    theres absolutely no reason to prefer using your phone than integrating w/ a modern head unit, other than preferring the familiar.

    Meh. Agree to disagree.

     

    Lots of vehicles made in the past few years have a USB/Aux input if you want to go wired.

     

    And the 6.23 5.5 inch sized screen of a 6 plus is plenty big of a screen for me.

     

    Edit: fixed my screen size error.

  • Reply 12 of 17
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by NolaMacGuy View Post

     

    yeah, youre crazy. wired sound is better than BT, but even that aside, the simple fact that looking at a big 7" screen for nav rather than a small cell screen is pretty much a common sense thing -- bigger is better.



    theres absolutely no reason to prefer using your phone than integrating w/ a modern head unit, other than preferring the familiar.

    I'll also add a quick question.

     

    Have you ever used Uber?

     

    Those small cell phone screens work just fine for navigation.

  • Reply 13 of 17
    vmarksvmarks Posts: 670editor
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by TechLover View Post

     

    To be fair I am a little bit crazy, not gonna lie. 

     

    Thanks for your input in this post and your last post. I have not used Carplay or Android Auto yet so its nice to get some input from someone who has. I can't speak to their touchscreens. But I absolutely agree that I would rather Apple/Google handle the interface over the the traditional guys.

     

    Regarding my abysmal touchscreen remark, I have only used factory stuff. I understand that they in general they are resistive so you can wear gloves in the winter for example. So they don't have that nice quality capacitive glass feel that we are all used to. But, they also don't have the glare of a capacitive glass screen as far as I have seen, which is nice. That is fair enough.

     

    But I have been in probably over a dozen 2015 vehicles or so and just too many others to count from previous years. And almost always the touch screens are just not good at all. The screens themselves are almost always fairly low resolution and do not feel good. Sometimes I feel like I am going to break them with the lightest touch as I see the display change color under the pressure of my finger. The touch targets are often small and non-responsive (see above where I agree with you about Apple/Google doing better interfaces). And overall I find them to be more of a bother than a help.

     

    Then again I am a crazy knob person ;) I'll take a knob any day over a button for things like volume/tuning, fan speed/temperature/zone, etc. The buttons I do like are things like volume/tuning buttons located on the steering wheel. That is a great use for buttons. But in some cars the amount of stuff they have put on the steering wheel nowadays is almost overwhelming. It can take a little getting used to.

     

    Now get off my lawn! :)




    My car is a 2005 with aftermarket AirPlay / android auto.

     

    I agree I like knobs. I have the knob on my steering wheel, and it controls the radio perfectly. Best of both worlds.

     

    The touch targets are big, and I never need to poke hard enough to see the screen color change. I can't remember seeing that on the in car displays. The screens in CarPlay and Android Auto are capacitive screens. I haven't had gloves in the winter so I haven't seen that problem. Also, my heat works in the car quickly. (Also, I have seat heaters. winter is awesome in my car.)

     

    I'm gonna set up a chair on your lawn. 

  • Reply 14 of 17
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by vmarks View Post

     

    My car is a 2005 with aftermarket AirPlay / android auto.

     

    I agree I like knobs. I have the knob on my steering wheel, and it controls the radio perfectly. Best of both worlds.

     

    The touch targets are big, and I never need to poke hard enough to see the screen color change. I can't remember seeing that on the in car displays. The screens in CarPlay and Android Auto are capacitive screens. I haven't had gloves in the winter so I haven't seen that problem. Also, my heat works in the car quickly. (Also, I have seat heaters. winter is awesome in my car.)

     

    I'm gonna set up a chair on your lawn. 


    Don't bother bringing your own chair, I have plenty.

     

    And plenty of food and drinks.

     

    It appears that I now have two things that I have to go fiddle with in person. 1.) Got to go play with the new Apple TV when it comes out. And 2.) I really need to goof around with these new head units.

     

    Thanks for your input and info. I am going to check it out.

     

    Side note, agreed that fast heat and ass warmers are a must. No doubt about it. I also have become a fan of heated side mirrors.

  • Reply 15 of 17
    techlover wrote: »

    Regarding my abysmal touchscreen remark, I ......

    Then again I am a crazy knob person ;) I'll take a knob any day over a button....

    You're uninformed about how CarPlay is being implemented by different carmakers, and what it does other than music and maps.

    Apple has quite a bit of information on its website, if you'd care to check it out.
  • Reply 16 of 17
    dachar wrote: »
    I seem to remember more than 1 year ago a few manufacturers saying that they would introduce CarPlay for 2015 models. One year on and it appears very few mass market cars have CarPlay as standard. Not sure if this just as the lead in times for changes to car production are so long or if there are other reasons for CarPals slow appearance.

    I agree that the rollout is disappointingly slow, especially among higher-end carmakers. Frustrating.
  • Reply 17 of 17
    techlover wrote: »
    Call me crazy but I am still unconvinced by paying to have all of this stuff integrated into the head unit.

    If I were buying a brand new car today, which is unlikely since its price drops like a rock the second you drive it off the lot. I would pass on CarPlay, Android Auto, or any integrated navigation system unless they were free or cheaper than not having them.

    I bought a CarPlay deck about 6 months ago, I was one of the best purchases I've ever made. The hands free experience alone is worth the purchase. Siri is nice on the iPhone, but it really shines when CarPlay is involved.

    There are a ton of hands free features that Apple only offers during CarPlay. Honestly, CarPlay's Siri experience is, hands down, the best Siri experience Apple has on any device.

    I won't buy a car that doesn't support it or won't allow me to immediately add an after market deck. It's that good. After a week with it you're going to find any other dash experience intolerable.

    It's one of Apple's best products. I wish Apple would demo it in their stores. It really is amazing.
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