Apple’s newly announced CarPlay, which is the rebranded version of iOS in the Car, a system for converting your vehicle’s in-car entertainment system into an iOS-powered dashboard fed content and brains by your phone, is a play that could massively expand the Apple mobile ecosystem – by turning cars into app-enabled iPhone accessories. The CarPlay system was revealed today during the Geneva Motor Show, where partners Ferrari, Mercedes-Benz and Volvo all announced that they’d begin shipping CarPlay-enabled vehicles to drivers this week.
At last June’s WWDC keynote, Apple unveiled a bunch of stuff — including a sleeper sort of product it called iOS in the Car. The idea was to let auto makers give their vehicles the ability to serve as a second screen for a driver’s iPhone, with bigger-screen versions of apps such as Music and Maps and voice control provided by Siri. Now iOS in the Car is ready to hit the road. Confirming a story reported last week by the Financial Times, Ferrari, Mercedes-Benz and Volvo are at the Geneva International Motor Show announcing that they’re rolling out the feature — which is now called CarPlay — in new vehicles this year. If you aren’t planning to buy a Ferrari, a Mercedes or a Volvo anytime soon, you might still be able to put CarPlay on your shopping list next time you get new wheels: BMW, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Hyundai, Jaguar, Land Rover, Kia, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Subaru, Suzuki, Toyota and others are also planning to support it in future models.