Apple's Quest To Conquer Your Car Is Tougher Than It Sounds

Illustration for article titled Apples Quest To Conquer Your Car Is Tougher Than It Sounds
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1st Gear: iOS In The Car Is A Challenge

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Apple announced at WWDC the other day that its mobile operating platform, iOS, will be able to be integrated into cars. We're skeptical on if they can make a properly good infotainment system, as is BMW, who reportedly don't want the system in their cars.

Now analysts also believe that iOS In The Car will prove tough for the automakers as well. It helps automakers who want to keep up with what's new in the world of telematics and keep their cars on the cutting edge. But it also gets rid of the automakers' control over the experience inside their cars.

That's the issue.

A lot of mapping and infotainment systems are painstakingly designed by automakers in order to work in harmony with the experience of driving one of their cars. In an economy proposition, like Chevrolet's MyLink and BringGo, which already rely on a smart phone for nav and other entertainment systems, it makes sense. For a high end maker like Audi or Mercedes, it makes less sense.

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2nd Gear: Self-Driving Cars Are As Welcome As Flying Cars

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In case you were wondering, the flying car isn't a particularly excellent idea. John McCormick, a licensed pilot, makes a some good points in the Detroit News this morning about why the autonomous car isn't ready for primetime. For example, some want state regulations, NHTSA wants no state regulations and a longer testing time before the public can purchase the cars. That means nobody knows what's going on. Computers are great, but the human brain (no matter how inept a person is) is still better at making decisions on the fly in a complicated traffic situation.

They might get there someday, but right now it doesn't look good.

3rd Gear: Cars Damaged In Hurricane Sandy Land In Washington

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And not Washington, DC, but Washington state. The one in the Northwest. The cars are showing up in the Northwest and are for sale there amongst other used cars. That means that the cars were probably bought at auction and shipped across the country.

Car buyers should, as always, thoroughly research their cars before they buy and keep an eye out for rust, brittle wiring, and other signs of flood damage.

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4th Gear: Renault Might Charge Up In China

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Renault, like any automaker, wants to expand its presence in China. It might do that with a $1.2 billion joint venture with Dongfeng Motor Group.

China's environment ministry has approved the venture, but the rest of the departments are yet to approve. Once they do, it sounds like the deal will move through. It will also give Renault its first factory in China, which will put it on par with nearly every other global manufacturer.

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5th Gear: Rest In Peace, Jason Leffler

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Last night we lost NASCAR veteran Jason Leffler in a devastating sprint car crash at Bridgeport Speedway in New Jersey, It's always awful to lose a member of the racing community, and our thoughts are with Leffler's young son Charlie and the rest of his family.

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There is no word on what caused the crash yet, and we aren't going to speculate on it. It's just another one of those moments that makes you question why you love motorsports so much and if it's all really worth it.

Reverse

On this day in 1895, Emile Levassor drives a Panhard et Levassor car with a two-cylinder, 750-rpm, four-horsepower Daimler Phoenix engine over the finish line in the world's first real automobile race. Levassor completed the 732-mile course, from Paris to Bordeaux and back, in just under 49 hours, at a then-impressive speed of about 15 miles per hour.

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[HISTORY]

Neutral

What do you think about autonomous cars? Are they ready for the highways and byways of the USA? Or do they need more time in the oven?

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DISCUSSION

victorioussecret
Victorious Secret

This is why BMW and Audi, among others, don't care for Apple in their systems

They've already beaten Apple at their own game.

Why would I want Apple Maps when I have access to the native, flash storage based (and thus upgradeable) database on the car combined with Google Maps routing?

Why would I want iOS specific integration when I don't have an iOS device?

These guys are better off catering to the entire market, and the entire market isn't Apple.

These systems also tend to have shelf lives of around 5 years before they get updated, sometimes previous gen owners can upgrade along, sometimes they can't. Depends on what gets changed. I know BMW and Audi guys can shell out 1-2k and revamp their system to the newest one if they really want to.

Apple doesn't play that game. Apple plays the "here is new hardware and software on a yearly basis, pay up if you don't want to get left behind"

So I'll stick with being drilled by the manufacturer alone.

I like Apple, I like using iOS (most of the time) but the last place I want Apple is in my car.