Connected cars, a new battlefield for Google and Apple

With each technological advance there is always a tough battle. There are many interests at stake and we have seen the pattern repeat again and again: VHS vs Beta, PlayStation vs Xbox, Blu-Ray vs HD-DVD, Android vs iOS. The latter has also reached the automobile world. Will Apple CarPlay or Android Auto win the battle? Do you want to know which car brands have opted for each system?

With the dream of a connected and fully integrated car about to become true, the first e-vehicles will go on sale later this year and early 2017. As expected, there is a market battle between the two systems that have already struggled in the field of smartphones, and the winner is not clear yet.

The aim of both companies: make cars smarter and more interactive, enjoy all mobile devices’ features and apps also behind the wheel and develop new ones to improve and facilitate the driving experience. In the battle for the perfect connected car, there already are three sides. Will people ever choose a car for its operating system?

Ferrari, Mercedes, BMW, Citroën, Jaguar, Land Rover, Peugeot Citroen PSA and Toyota have been the first companies to confirm that they will integrate iPhone technology  into their vehicles and that they will draw their full potential with Apple. CarPlay was the first connected car system to be introduced (Geneva Motor Show, 2014) and it will become a simple tool by and for drivers based on a single control button on the steering wheel that will activate the smart device by voice commands.

Android Auto 2

Google’s proposal is also very intuitive, and it’s partly controlled by voice. It aims to make your road trips and car travels much safer. Android Auto will add a new screen to the vehicle (different to the driver’s phone), which will be integrated into the dashboard in order to avoid distractions. The appearance of the applications will be different from the smartphone ones.

Google’s initiative has been joined by many brands such as Acura, Bentley, Infiniti, Maserati, Renault, Seat, Skoda and Volkswagen. The so-called Open Automotive Alliance, with over twenty members,  has also expressed its support to Google’s approach to connected cars.

However, many members of this alliance (Abarth, Alfa Romeo, Audi, Chevrolet, Chrysler, Dodge, Fial, Ford, Honda, Hyunda, Kia, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Jeep, Opel, Ram , Subaru, Suzuki and Volvo) don’t want to risk and will not work exclusively with Android Auto. They are the third side of the battle, the neutral party that hopes to offer its customers the two alternatives so they can choose the one they prefer in the very near future.

And you, are you an Apple fan or do you stand on Google’s side? Ferrari or Maserati? Will you keep the operating system in mind next time you buy a car?