After roughly ten years, GM believes it can create the software as well as Apple and Google.
This is the message conveyed by the news that GM’s upcoming electric autos will not support Android Auto or Apple CarPlay, preventing users from enjoying a native-like experience by mirroring their smartphones straight onto their car’s infotainment panels.
The decision by GM immediately drew criticism from customers who are still using CarPlay or Android Auto. Given the poor software history of the automotive sector and the huge popularity of the Apple & Android operating systems, none of it should come as a surprise. (In fact, as Reuters pointed out when it broke this story, GM once bragged of having more CarPlay- and Android Auto-compatible cars than any other automaker).
Nearly 80% of new car purchasers, according to Apple’s own study, would only consider a vehicle that enabled CarPlay.
“Based on all of our research over the past few years, there’s definitely massive demand and interest in Apple CarPlay and Android Auto,” stated Robby DeGraff, an analyst with the AutoPacific company that conducts automobile research and marketing.
According to DeGraff, only requests for additional USB-C outlets in autos were in front of requests for those phone systems in the latest research conducted by his company.
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Why GM Choose to Fight with Apple
A native navigation system, according to Edmunds, might be more effective with Super Cruise or its planned, more sophisticated Ultra Cruise driven by lidar. Additionally, according to Mike Hichme, executive director of GM’s digital cockpit experience, the company does not want to build features that would exclude individuals who do not own cell phones.
But in the end, it’s all about having the upper hand. The next generation of automobiles will be more concerned with user data and subscription services than they will be with fast electric torque and reducing carbon emissions, whether or not drivers want that to be the case. Data and subscriptions are expected to be extremely profitable income sources for the auto sector. By 2030, GM alone wants to more than double its subscription revenue to $25 billion annually.
He added “That said, GM is picking a battle with what is arguably one of the most culturally relevant and influential consumer brands in history, specifically the one that most would credit with creating the touchscreen obsession that automakers are currently leaning into,”
The Battle for the Screen
However, GM’s choice to abandon CarPlay & Android Auto may be the beginning of a wider trend. It’s entirely possible that more manufacturers may wish to give up third-party cellphone projecting systems in the future, even as they work with businesses like Google to assist with developing infotainment systems as well as software suites.