During its 24th annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in San Francisco, Apple teased an interesting new mobile initiative: iOS in the Car. Showed off briefly onstage by Apple SVP of Internet and Software Services Eddy Cue, iOS in the Car is Apple’s effort to work with car manufacturers to further integrate its mobile operating system. To that end, the iPhone maker claims to have “95 percent car integration,” meaning the platform is ready to work with nearly all modern cars on the road today.
iOS in the Car goes beyond services like iPod Out and Siri Eyes Free with access to phone calls, iTunes, Maps and Messages within the mobile OS. Cue briefly showed that users will be able to call up songs or artists through voice, as well as directions. Given that Siri can already handle it, we imagine the ability to initiate phone calls and text messages will be included, too.
While interesting news, this doesn’t necessarily put Apple ahead of the pack in the race to your dashboard. Several companies have been publicly going at it for some time now, including those bullish enough to put out proprietary solutions, like Mercedes and its gesture-based, augmented reality known as DICE. Unlike Apple’s offering, DICE looks to take over not just the entire dashboard, but the windshield as well. Dangerous? Possibly. Cool? Absolutely.
Other auto makers, have opted to partner up with software creators to nab their share. Take Ford and Microsoft’s Sync program, for instance. App developers were recently granted the option to join in the fun through its AppLink initiative, potentially opening your dashboard up to the range of your favorite apps, like Spotify.
In both regards, Apple has opted to take a far more conservative approach. But given its purportedly wide reach with 95 percent car integration, maybe that’s enough to rocket iOS into the lead in the race for your dashboard. All things considered, don’t expect to see iOS in the Car for a long time–until at least 2014, according to Engadget.