Here’s GM’s Latest Excuse to Drop Apple CarPlay, Android Auto

General Motors has been facing its fair share of criticism since it announced plans to drop Apple CarPlay et Android Auto in future electric vehicles, starting with the 2024 Chevrolet Blazer EV that we’ve tested not only once but twice already.

Instead, the automaker wants to use a next-generation infotainment and navigation system developed with Google in order to capture more data on how consumers drive and charge their EVs. The system, which features Google Built-in (Google Maps, Google Assistant, Google Play) along with many available popular apps such as Spotify and Audible, will be free at first but will require a paid subscription after a few years.

LISTEN: The Car Guide Podcast EP22

Mike Himche, executive director of digital cockpit experience at GM, initially brought a good point, telling Reuters that "we have a lot of new driver assistance features coming that are more tightly coupled with navigation and we don’t want to design these features in a way that are dependent on a person having a cellphone."

Just so you know, GM and Google have been working together since 2019 to lay out the software foundations (called “Ultifi”) for infotainment systems that will be more tightly integrated with other vehicle systems. GM's Super Cruise semi-autonomous driving technology is a good example.

Photo: Louis-Philippe Dubé

In the Name of Safety?

Now, there’s another explanation, this one coming from Tim Babbitt, head of product for infotainment at GM. In an interview with Motor Trend, he said the move is also about the safety of occupants.

Referencing studies by J.D. Power, Babbitt mentioned that drivers are sometimes experiencing problems with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto including bad connections, poor rendering and slow responses, even with wired integration. Many will pick up their phones again, turning their attention away from the road.

With Google Maps already built-in and a native voice assistant that actually works and has access to many of the vehicle's systems, GM believes it has part of the solution, thus making CarPlay and Android Auto unnecessary. On the other hand, it makes no sense that the drive mode selector is hidden inside several menus instead of being readily accessible on the dashboard or centre console, as we found in the Blazer EV.

Ultimately, the absence of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto has its advantages and disadvantages, and it will be up to users to judge whether they are necessary according to their needs. Remember, Tesla is doing fine without them. Same thing with Rivian.

Share on Facebook

More on the subject

NewsGM to Phase Out Apple CarPlay, Android Auto in Future EVs
Now widely spread across the auto industry, could Apple CarPlay and Android Auto already be on the way out? When it comes to General Motors, the answer is yes. Reuters reported on Friday that GM plans to phase out both technologies in future electric vehicles. The process will start with …
NewsApple CarPlay, Android Auto are Worse Than Drunk Driving, Study Shows
The latest in-vehicle infotainment systems designed to improve road safety are failing and impair reactions times behind the wheel more than alcohol and cannabis use, according to a shocking new study commissioned by British independent road-safety organization IAM RoadSmart. In particular, reaction times at highway speeds increased average stopping distances …
ElectricGM Delays Electric Pickup Production to Align With Demand
General Motors has made quite a statement with the launch of the outrageously sized and amazingly capable GMC Hummer EV , but the fact of the matter is that a lot more people are waiting for a Chevrolet Silverado EV or GMC Sierra EV . And yet the automaker now …
ElectricChevrolet Equinox EV’s Launch to be Delayed “a Few Months”
The upcoming Chevrolet Equinox EV is unquestionably one of the most anticipated electric vehicles in Canada, with pricing to start below $40,000—at least that’s what we were promised during the model’s introduction last year. Sadly, the wait is far from over yet. The first units were scheduled to enter production …
ElectricBug-Filled Chevrolet Blazer EV Hit With Stop-Sale Order in the U.S.
Deliveries of the all-new Chevrolet Blazer EV to U.S. customers began in late summer, but things have definitely not gone according to plan due to numerous problems and bugs with the vehicle. As a matter of fact, the company released a stop-sale order last Friday to fix a software-related quality …
CESNew Features Coming to Android Auto, Google Built-in
Unsurprisingly, Google is one of many companies using CES 2024 in Las Vegas this week to make various announcements and reveals. We’ll focus on the ones that are aimed at drivers. First of all, electric vehicles compatible with Android Auto will be able to share real-time battery information with Google …
NewsChevrolet Unveils Next-Gen 2025 Equinox
It's fair to say that Chevrolet’s SUV lineup covers as many bases as possible with the Trailblazer, Equinox, Blazer, Traverse, Tahoe, Suburban... and that's without counting GMC's line-up of counterparts. The electric Equinox has shown its face a few times at trade shows, but we're still waiting for it to …
NewsBlazer EV Stop Sale Order Lifted, Chevy Lowers Pricing
General Motors today announced that it has lifted the stop sale order on the Chevrolet Blazer EV . Chevrolet issued the order to suspend sales a little over two months ago because the electric SUV was suffering from technical and software problems, which generally affected the infotainment system. There were …