GM to Ditch Apple CarPlay in Upcoming Electric Vehicles

General Motors (GM) has announced its plans to phase out the widely-used Apple CarPlay and Android Auto technologies in its future electric vehicles, in favor of its built-in infotainment systems developed with Google, confirming the news with Reuters.

The automaker has been working with Google since 2019 to develop the software foundations for infotainment systems that will be more tightly integrated with other vehicle systems such as GM’s Super Cruise driver assistant.

The decision to phase out the CarPlay is a setback for Apple in its competition with Google to own infotainment systems in the car. GM’s Chevrolet brand in the past boasted of offering more models with CarPlay or Android Auto than any other brand.

According to GM, its decision to stop offering those systems in future electric vehicles, starting with the 2024 Chevrolet Blazer, could help the automaker capture more data on how consumers drive and charge EVs.

This would enable GM to offer more digital subscription services to its customers. By 2035, GM aims to phase out production of new combustion light-duty vehicles. The automaker believes that focusing engineers and investment on one approach to more tightly connecting in-vehicle infotainment and navigation with features such as assisted driving will benefit the company.

“We do believe there are subscription revenue opportunities for us. GM Chief Executive Mary Barra is aiming for $20 billion to $25 billion in annual revenue from subscriptions by 2030,” said Edward Kummer, GM’s chief digital officer.

Buyers of GM electric vehicles with the new systems will get access to Google Maps and Google Assistant, a voice command system, at no extra cost for eight years, GM said. The future infotainment systems will offer applications such as Spotify’s music service, Audible and more.

“We have a lot of new driver assistance features coming that are more tightly coupled with navigation. We don’t want to design these features in a way that is dependent on a person having a cellphone,” said Mike Himche, executive director of digital cockpit experience, to Reuters.

GM says it does still plan to offer both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto in its gas vehicles. Bluetooth for both music and phone calls will still be supported said the company.

The move means GM will be able to offer an infotainment system that will like provide the automaker with more insights into driver usage of the system, unlike the privacy aspects of Apple CarPlay.