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Reader Review: Apple CarPlay

per Leonardo Freitas, by Rendera

Since the launch of the CarPlay, l in March 2014, along with iOS 7.1, I was never excited about it. It was restricted to luxury cars, Siri didn't work in Brazil and I wasn't very interested in buying a Porsche, for the obvious reason that I didn't like any of the colors available

My car (a Hyundai Santa Fe) does not have a decent multimedia kit. the 2011/12 model and this version does not have Bluetooth or native GPS, which has always been a problem for me, which I drive a lot. Not to mention that almost none of these old Hyundai models are compatible with the Lightning cable, making it difficult to even charge the phone on the vehicle's USB, which has little power (my iPhone is a 6 Plus).

It was then that, in October, I went to search some multimedia systems with GPS, audio and Bluetooth calls compatible with my car. I found a series of models, with a finish that mimics the design of the car, but with a very bad interface and several complaints in forums I researched. Not to mention the price, which was in the range of R $ 1,500 to R $ 1,800, for something generic and unbranded.

A, the surprise came: Pioneer I had recently launched two models with everything I wanted and still compatible with the Apple CarPlay, national guarantee and acceptable price. They are: AVIC-F70TV and AVIC-F970TV.

Models and prices

I know that what matters to us here is CarPlay, but I think it is important to say a few things to you, since the products are new in Brazil.

First, they are manufactured in our country, making it much better to buy here than import. In the United States they cost around US $ 600 and here they go for an average of R $ 2,000 to R $ 2,500, not to mention the advantage of the guarantee.

The models differ only in terms of screen size and an SD card slot in the larger model. The F70TV is 7 inches and the F970TV is 6.1 inches. Their price difference is R $ 200 to R $ 400. But it wasn't even the price factor that made me choose the F970. For a previous experience with a Pioneer multimedia, I don't like the finish of the 7 inch model, as the retractable screen jumps out of the panel, making it impossible to discreetly mask it, as it needs to have the bottom free to open . I think it's kind of weird, but it tastes personal.

I made a very detailed video about the installation process and information on where to buy:

The operation of CarPlay is from 13'15 ?.

Using CarPlay

First of all, remember that the feature is an Apple solution for using iOS in the car safely and with good usability. It was not intended for use on Facebook, WhatsApp, videos, etc. So be aware that this is not a screen mirroring, for example.

Using CarPlay is extremely simple and you don't need to configure anything at all. Just pin the cable on the iPhone and in seconds the multimedia system shows the Apple interface in full operation.

With more than a week of use, I was very satisfied with the purchase. Siri really makes a difference and my experience behind the wheel won a pinch of Apple. Thankfully, only software and Pioneer that sells the hardware would not be possible to buy in the current reality of Ma.

Applications

The main applications are: Telephone, Music, Messages, Maps (which still does not work in Brazil), Podcasts, Audiobooks and, currently, Spotify.

Apple CarPlay apps

I'll start talking about Spotify, which, although I love it, has lost its place to Apple Music due to the integration with the system, which I demonstrate very well on the video. In addition to the lack of integration, the Spotify app still suffers from some bugs in all versions of CarPlay that I saw. But it's nothing you can't use.

Spotify on Apple CarPlay

If you don't like Apple Music or just prefer Spotify, the option is also excellent.

Calls and messages

Calls and messages are super-simple. When you touch the icon, the first option of the system is to activate Siri, asking who you want to call or send a message to. For contacts, you can do this manually, navigating between favorites, recent, contacts and the numeric keypad.

Siri on Apple CarPlay

J sending and receiving exclusive messages by Siri. It is not possible to view the message on the screen at all. Apple doesn't want you to take your eyes off the road and read messages, after all.

For anything you want to do, you have several options: press the icon, hold the Start button on the multimedia screen (or the call button on your car's steering wheel) or speak E a, Siri. If your microphone is properly positioned (mine is on the windshield at the top), Siri will respond very well. The very nice experience and clean interface means that you don't even have to look at the screen to access the icons with your finger.

Music and Podcasts

The highlight of this entertainment system. I didn't like Apple Music because I was used to Spotify, but using CarPlay made me give the service a try. streaming from Apple and I do not regret it (even today it is R $ 5 more expensive). After I got used to the Apple Music interface, I remade a good part of my music library and it was good because I realized that a lot was taking up space and I didn't even hear it. It was like doing a clean music installation.

Apple Music on Apple CarPlay

The simple and very similar interface in CarPlay that we find on the iPhone. It's easy to navigate by touching the screen, but the highlight is really Siri. You can order, for example, a specific song without taking your hands off the wheel. Or a podcast, which is usually even more difficult to find a specific one, as they have different titles. In addition to convenience, security is something that cannot be denied.

Music that is not offline, Siri searches the Apple Music library and is very fast. I did a test, specifically, saying: Siri, I want to hear the song Agachadinho, from Harmonia do Samba. And the assistant, pagodeira like, even brought me a live version. It is worth noting that I have no band music on my iPhone.

Rdio Beats 1 on Apple CarPlay

In addition, the Beats 1 radio is also available in one of the tabs, which is an option for those who want to listen to music more randomly with the radio language.

Bluetooth Navigation and Maps

Finally, I tried to use CarPlay via Bluetooth, but I couldn't; my iOS 9.1. Perhaps in future updates Pioneer will make this adjustment, because, from what I saw, it depends on the hardware company. I see no problem with leaving the phone on the cable, I even think the sound quality is better than leaving it recharging. But every now and then you need to pick it up, and if the cable is too short, it can get in the way.

Maps is really needed, because, although the multimedia system has a good native GPS, it does not provide real-time traffic information, in addition to nearby locations and voice search. Typing the address, letter by letter, without a search engine that at least completes the typing, is quite different from the facilities we have in today's world and that CarPlay itself gets used to.

I had hoped that Google Maps will be available soon, but even Android Auto doesn't work in Brazil yet, so I won't be excited. Incidentally, this model from Pioneer is also compatible with Android Auto.

As Brazilians, we have, once again, to wait.