General Motors (GM) plans to stop supporting Apple’s Carplay and Google’s Android Auto in future electric models, instead using its own software platform with a deep link to vehicle data. The move is aimed at making the operation of electric cars more efficient. The car manufacturer, incorporating Cadillac, Chevrolet and Buick, stated that the vehicle could know more than a phone. Carplay and Android Auto enable users to use the world of apps they are used to from their smartphones in the car. However, the operation designed by manufacturers has often been described as cumbersome and outdated.
Smartphone integration offered the advantage that drivers could use their usual services on the go. The software runs on the smartphones, not in the on-board computer. Some industry experts argue that it will be hard for car companies to win the battle for the “human interface” in the long run as people want to have their familiar smartphone controls. Nevertheless, electric cars provide manufacturers with an important trump card. Range accuracy must be correctly calculated for navigation, requiring access to battery status and other vehicle data.
GM is not the first car manufacturer to expand its own software offerings. Volkswagen recently launched an app store for all its group brands. Manufacturers have previously been hesitant to ban Carplay and Android Auto. However, more and more car manufacturers are using a neutral or modified version of Android as the basis for their own infotainment systems. Last year, Apple presented a Carplay version that could also take over the instrument cluster including the tempo display. It is unclear whether manufacturers will use this.