Volvo and Apple are joining forces by integrating Apple CarPlay into Volvo vehicles.
Both companies are aiming high and stated the alliance promises to transform the in-car experience.
Called Apple CarPlay, Apple said the new service brings all the features and services familiar to iPad, iPhone or iPod users directly into the car via Volvo Cars’ large center console touch screen display.
Volvo Cars said it enhances Apple’s capabilities by linking them to a specially-developed interface that allows drivers to use voice and steering wheel controls to access Apple features and services, ensuring the entire interaction is always safe and easy to use.
Both companies declared the interaction between Apple’s operating system and Volvo Cars’ newly-designed in car software and interface have been designed with simplicity and functionality in mind, two qualities that unite both Volvo Cars and Apple.
“Apple’s clean and intuitive user interface is a perfect match with Volvo’s Scandinavian Design approach and our focus on fluid functionality,” said Håkan Samuelsson, president and CEO of Volvo Cars.
The first car to offer Apple CarPlay will be a completely redesigned XC90 SUV which will be introduced later in 2014.
With Apple CarPlay, users will immediately recognize their basic iPhone applications, such as phone, messages, music and navigation, said Volvo. The initial offer will also feature third party audio apps including Spotify, the popular music streaming service.
Volvo Cars said its portrait screen layout will give users the benefit of having both Volvo Cars and Apple content co-existing simultaneously, removing the need to switch between a dedicated car and iPhone screen.
“iPhone users will feel completely at home in a new Volvo. We have created a wholly-integrated user experience in our large portrait-oriented touch screen that takes the in-car mobile device experience to a new level. That, coupled with the obvious driver safety benefits of an advanced voice control system like Siri, made Apple a perfect match for Volvo,” added Håkan Samuelsson.
Apple CarPlay allows connection of the device to the car through a Lightning cable – with Wi-Fi coming in the near future, per Volvo. The connection is based on a streaming H.264 video feed that returns user input from the touchscreen.
Apple CarPlay will be available in forthcoming Volvo models based on the new Scalable Product Architecture (SPA), starting with the nextVolvo XC90.