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Mercedes Won’t Let Apple CarPlay Take Full Control Of Screens

Key Takeaways

  • Mercedes rejects Apple’s immersive CarPlay in favor of its own solution.
  • Mercedes CEO Ola Kallenius says creating a holistic software architecture is important for customer satisfaction.
  • Mercedes is collaborating with Google on a new navigation feature.

Mercedes-Benz CEO Ola Kallenius has said the German luxury automaker has no plans to adopt Apple’s next-generation version of CarPlay. Previewed late last year, the upcoming Apple CarPlay update will integrate itself into all available screens, including the passenger display and auxiliary displays. However, Mercedes does not want to adopt this, with Kallenius telling The Verge, “The short answer is no.”

Instead, the chief executive says Mercedes will need to create a “holistic software architecture” to meet the demands of customers seeking the very best technology from their cars. While Porsche and Aston Martin are expected to be the first brands to adopt the new version of CarPlay, Mercedes is clearly hesitant to allow Apple to take control of the digital dials, infotainment system, and climate controls.

Mercedes Working With Google On New Navigation Feature

As a luxury brand, the user interface, controls, and ergonomics are very important to the overall experience. Having Apple take over from Mercedes could potentially dilute that feeling, and Kallenius has hinted at this. “I fundamentally believe that holistic customer experience is best done by us, and we will serve you,” he said.

Related

Apple CarPlay And Android Auto Receive Useful Upgrades

Improvements and bug fixes are making two popular apps easier to use.

Like several other brands, Mercedes is working closely with Google on an unspecified navigation feature related to Google Maps. However, the relationship isn’t one-sided, as Mercedes engineers will also be part of the development process.

2025 Mercedes-Benz EQS Sedan_033
Mercedes-Benz

Apple CarPlay Will Still Be Offered In Mercedes Vehicles

Before customers get worried, Mercedes has no intention of excluding Apple CarPlay (or Android Auto) from its vehicles. Both systems are used by millions of people and often influence buying decisions when it comes to purchasing a new car. It’s worth noting that General Motors has removed both apps from its vehicles. A GM spokesperson previously told CarBuzz that “GM’s embedded infotainment strategy is driven by the benefits of having a system that allows for greater integration with the larger GM ecosystem and vehicles.”

“We’re not fundamentalists to say, for some reason, we’re not going to allow a customer to use Apple CarPlay if that’s what they choose to do. So, we have Apple CarPlay. We have Android Auto. If, for some of the functions, you feel more comfortable with that and will switch back and forth, be my guest. You can get that, too.”

– Ola Kallenius, Mercedes-Benz CEO.

For Mercedes, the intrusive nature of the next-gen CarPlay is Apple going too far. “To give up the whole cockpit head unit – in our case, a passenger screen – and everything to somebody else, the answer is no.” It’s worth noting that the US Department of Justice has sued Apple for allegedly creating a monopoly and forcing the automotive industry to play by its rules. An excerpt from the lawsuit claims Apple has told automakers that it will take over all screens “if they want to use any of the features provided by CarPlay.”

Mercedes EQS interior, hyperscreen
Mercedes-Benz

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