WhatsApp has become the first prominent third-party messaging app to add in support for Apple’s CarPlay iPhone to infotainment interface.
The 2.18.20 WhatsApp update, according to iCulture, now allows for the app to work become part of CarPlay, with the familiar icon no appearing amidst the native apps on the CarPlay interface which is piped from an iPhone connected to a compatible car onto the infotainment system’s main display.
Once updated and connected to CarPlay, WhatsApp will function like any other messaging app but can only be used in accordance to the strict rules Apple has for CarPlay apps.
Part of this involves only letting a driver compose messages using their voice and having messages read out to the driver so their eyes are not distracted from the road by trying to read text on a screen.
For WhatsApp, Siri will need to be used to dictate and send messages through the app, much like the native iMessage app.
There are limitations to the WhatsApp CarPlay app in that there’s no way to browse through a list of chat conversations. Instead the app serves up new messages through a simple notification dot on the app icon and users are reliant on Siri to navigate the app.
While such a limitation may be frustrating so people who hate using voice commands, WhatsApp’s move to add CarPlay compatibility into its app indicated that there could be a growing interest in Apple’s car interface, especially as it’s now finding its way into more vehicles. We wouldn’t be surprised to see other messaging apps follow WhatsApp’s tracks and start to play nice with CarPlay.
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