Apple is extending its CarPlay software to become a broader platform for car manufacturers. The goal is that users will be able to adjust their in-vehicle settings using Apple CarPlay. Things like AC, heating, seat and mirror adjustment, and of course the entertainment system.
The report from Bloomberg said that the platform is nicknamed IronHeart by the engineers working on it. IronHeart will be like an augmentation of existing CarPlay technology, which users can deploy to project apps from an iPhone to the vehicle’s built-in display. The company also makes a feature called Car Keys as part of iOS 14, allowing users to unlock their vehicles using an Apple Watch or iPhone.
The report says that IronHeart aims to make it so users can adjust the radio, air conditioning, armrests, car seats, and more, with just the phone, instead of using the built-in software provided by the car manufacturers. The project was described by Bloomberg’s sources as being in early stages, which could indicate that more capabilities could be added as time goes by. Apple plans to make IronHeart available to car manufacturers through an API (application programming interface), which could make the software easier to implement, possibly speeding up industry adoption.
The Apple car is still in the works
Vehicle software can be delivered using a variety of ways. Some of them require automakers to overhaul the existing code in their cars. With the API Apple is making, the automakers can integrate the system with existing code instead of replacing it. Moreover, the API will allow the automakers to customize which IronHeart features their vehicles support.
The report comes as Apple is said to be continuing with a long-rumoured plan to develop an electric, self-driving vehicle. To speed up the effort, Apple acquired Drive.ai in 2019 to gain the deep learning software the startup had created for autonomous driving purposes.