Apple CarPlay and Android Auto Now Crucial Features for New Car Buyers


New data suggests that in-car entertainment and information systems like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are shifting from a premium option into a required feature for new vehicle buyers.

According to a new report from Strategy Analytics published yesterday, 34 percent of owners of vehicles featuring Apple’s CarPlay rely on the technology for all of their audio entertainment needs, while 27 percent of Android Auto similarly rely on the platform.

Strategy Analytics surveyed 100 Apple CarPlay users and 100 Android Auto users to understand the average usage rates and satisfaction levels for each technology. Overall, users with access to both platforms enjoy the ability to access phone data from their car’s built-in infotainment console.

According to the survey, over 5 percent of CarPlay and Android Auto users are “somewhat or very satisfied” with their system, with more than 90 percent of them likely to recommend those systems to others.

The report takes away three main points:

  • Consumer feedback suggests that mirrored systems are far more preferable to embedded infotainment systems due to stronger visual appeal and better usability for key in-car tasks.
  • Strategy Analytics found that most consumers are using Android Auto and CarPlay for a majority of their in-car infotainment tasks.
  • However, issues are often noted with poor integration of the mirroring feature, making it difficult for the user to navigate between functions or access features like speech recognition.

“These consumers are showing lofty levels of satisfaction and are highly likely to recommend these systems to others,” said Derek Viita, senior analyst and report author.

“The most impressive finding is how many respondents would now be somewhat or very unlikely to consider a future vehicle without CarPlay or Android Auto. Typically we find that infotainment is far down the list of vehicle purchase priorities, but it appears that mirroring solutions could be changing this.”

“One out of four consumers who completed our survey said they would not be at all likely to consider a vehicle without a mirroring solution; while more than half would not be at all likely or somewhat unlikely, to consider one,” Viita concluded.

Check out the entire report here.


  • Tony

    The title is dead on. It’s definitely one of the features I look for when im going to buy a new car. Should be standard

  • mxmgodin

    It was my #1 must-have feature when I got a new car last year, and I don’t regret it one minute.

  • Mianbarray

    I was about to buy Lexus nx 300 but decided to wait for Acura RDX instead since 2019 RDX had Android auto

  • KKToronto

    I’ve been using Android auto for two years and I think this is the best ssftey feature you can have. It keeps me pay attention to road. I can just say navigate to home or simply a business name or call someone with my voice. if I forgot to turn on security or thermostat, I can just say it. I play my Google music playlist, or send a text to my family. I feel that it made my commute much safer by letting me do important things without having to reach for my phone. Stuff like if we are going to a store and not sure if the store is open I just say it for example is the nearest Walmart open? Or picking up someone from airport if the flight from such and such has landed or status of flight, etc. I can’t finish writing on how it had been part of my life and how it helped me drive safer for last two years. I recently bought a new SUV and changed my older leased vehicle to a new lease and in both cases this was a must thing to have. Even if you don’t have all the home automation stuff that I have like nest, garage door opener, security, bulbs, etc. It still let you do a lot more other things to make your drive safer like finding a time Horton along my route.

  • SOB

    I am not in the market for a new car but if I was looking supporting Carplay would be key. My 2011 Lexus doesn’t work when I try to call someone using my iPhone. The call always gets disconnected. My maps navigation is out of date for certain areas close to where I live. Voice recognition totally sucks. Don’t use it.

  • mrideas

    I would agree. I wouldn’t look a new car without CarPlay available. Not just that it’s available but that it works seemlessly and is well integrated/functional. My 2017 Honda CR-V does just an ok job integrating with it although still glitchy. I really wish I could control more things like th radio directly and also choose the map system I use with it. I appreciate it even more when I tried to recently update the built in nav system myself. Wow. Talk about a horrible process Honda. Makes you appreciate the more frequently updated Apple Maps and google maps!

  • My 1/2 cents

    According to Mazda, it’s not. Mazda customers have been asking and been promised since 2014 they would get Android Auto and Carplay.

    Now Mazda says only newer models (2019 on) will get it. They also said they would bring a diesel Mazda3 for North America, many years ago. That never happened. Mazda has never been very tech savvy with their entertainment systems and accessories even.