iPhone in the Car: Get Up Close With Apple CarPlay

Editor's note: This post was originally published by our partners at PopSugar Tech.
If your iPhone was built into your car's dash, you wouldn't have to get caught texting and driving again. In March, Apple announced CarPlay, which renovates the clunky digital infotainment system interface with the familiarity of the iOS mobile operating system.
We finally got to touch, see, and experience Apple CarPlay for ourselves while testing Pioneer's CarPlay-compatible aftermarket infotainment systems. Pioneer users with select models—AVIC-8000NEX, AVIC7000NEX, AVIC-6000NEX, AVIC5000NEX, and AVH-4000NEX—will be able to download the CarPlay software onto a USB drive, then simply install it onto the dash using the in-car USB port. The systems can be installed into just about any car, but it's not an installation project for a novice.
The systems can be bought at Best Buy, and Pioneer suggests hiring Best Buy's Geek Squad to implement the new infotainment center into the car. Get Apple CarPlay without getting a whole new car via Pioneer starting early Summer. You'll need a Lightning-cable-connected device (iPhone 5, 5S, or 5C), a data plan to use Messages or Maps, and iOS 7.1 or later. Scroll down to get an up-close-and-personal look at Apple CarPlay!

Watch Siri enable Apple CarPlay's Maps.

Watch Siri enable Apple CarPlay's iTunes.

Once the device is plugged in, you'll see this.

This USB cable is installed into the center console (middle compartment).

A microphone installed above the rearview mirror helps pick up clear sound.

The steering wheel can also enable voice control.

Enable Siri voice control by pressing down on the home screen button.

The menu dashboard includes phone, music, maps, messages, and now playing.

Find music by album, genre, etc., just as you would in iTunes. Podcasts are not supported right now.

Play iTunes Radio through CarPlay.

Find a type of location, such as "cafe," using Apple Maps.

Apple Maps also offers turn-by-turn directions.

Current location view in Apple Maps.

Apple Maps can list a certain type of destination, like "coffee shop" or "gas station."

Access contacts through CarPlay.

Send text messages, and have their responses be read back to you by Siri.