iOS 14 CarPlay Features: Everything You Need to know

new ios 14 carplay features

CarPlay is Apple’s in-car experience that lets you use the most relevant apps right in your vehicle. It’s quickly grown in popularity and enhances both everyday commutes and long road trips. It now comes in almost any car in the US, and iOS 14 brings with it a slew of new CarPlay features. Here’s everything you need to know about them.

  1. How to Change CarPlay Background in iOS 14
  2. Explore New App Categories in CarPlay
  3. How to Send Audio Messages with Siri
  4. How to Share Your ETA with Siri
  5. CarPlay Has Improved Maps
  6. Use Japanese and Chinese keyboards
  7. Horizontal Status Bar

How to Change CarPlay Background in iOS 14

Bored of the plain black and white backgrounds on CarPlay? Apple now lets you choose from 5 new vibrant options that look similar to the stock iOS 14 wallpapers.

Further, they are dynamic and adjust in appearance according to the time of day provided that dark and light mode switching is enabled.

set new carplay backgrounds

Follow the steps below to change the wallpaper in CarPlay.

  1. Launch the CarPlay Settings app
  2. Go to the Wallpaper section
  3. Select a wallpaper to see a preview. Then tap to confirm

Explore New App Categories in CarPlay

CarPlay now boasts three new app categories, namely parking, EV charging, and food ordering, to enhance your experience.

new app categories in carplay

For instance, a parking app could show you available spots in the vicinity while a charging station app could show you nearby EV chargers, or a food app could let you order at a restaurant while still on the way to it.

Further, developers now have more tools to customize app experiences, which will enable new possibilities and functionality in the future.

How to Send Audio Messages with Siri

Just like on your iPhone and iPad, Siri in CarPlay has a new look with iOS 14. It’s more minimal in appearance and displays in the middle of the screen when invoked.

You can now ask Siri to send a voice message while you drive.  Simply speak it out, and Siri will record the audio and send it to the contact you want. The recipient will be able to play the message and hear your voice.

How to Share Your ETA with Siri

along with voice messages, you can also ask Siri to send your estimated time of arrival to a Contact as you focus on driving. This can keep others in the loop about any delays you’re facing and is a useful safety feature.

CarPlay Has Improved Maps

The improved Apple Maps in iOS 14 enhances your CarPlay experience. For instance, you can now see alerts for approaching red lights or speed traffic cameras.

Further, if you have an electric vehicle, you will see navigation routes that have EV charging stations compatible with your car.

Maps will also help route you around any congested and restricted zones in certain areas.

improved maps in carplay

Use Japanese and Chinese Keyboards

CarPlay now supports keyboards in Chinese and Japanese so you can search for points of interest in your preferred language.

Horizontal Status Bar

iOS 14 horizontal status bar in CarPlay

If your car has a portrait screen, you can now have the CarPlay status bar at the bottom of the screen. This provides a more natural layout with wider app views.

Summing Up 

So what’s your experience using CarPlay? Does it make your commutes better, and which new features are you most looking forward to? Let us know in the comments below. You can also check out our guide to Apple’s new digital car keys.

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Author Profile

Mehak has a master’s degree in communication and over ten years of writing experience. Her passion for technology and Apple products led her to iGeeksBlog, where she specializes in writing product roundups and app recommendations for fellow Apple users. When not typing away on her MacBook Pro, she loves being lost in a book or out exploring the world.

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