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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Anyone has any inside info that would confirm if Volvo plans to update its Sensus system to play nice with the iOS 13 Carplay APIs?

More specifically it would be nice if:
- Carplay would be used fullscreen (iOS 13 adds support for fullscreen portrait Carplay)
- navigation data from Carplay would show up in the instrument cluster (support for this was also added in iOS 13)

Recently other manufacturers have started to add support for these new features (e.g. Renault's Rlink2 v8 software adds support for fullscreen vertical Carplay on existing cars)
 

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I hope they will do all that... but def not holding my breathe.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I actually posted a bunch of questions about this to Volvo's Twitter account but they didn't reply. Although they're quite active in responding to positive feedback about their cars on Twitter, they can't be bothered to give an answer (even if that would be "we don't know yet/we can't disclose future plans") on this matter.

I've also provided feedback on their online customer support form.
 

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Anyone has any inside info that would confirm if Volvo plans to update its Sensus system to play nice with the iOS 13 Carplay APIs?
I suspect, given the recent announcement that Google Android is the base platform for XC40 EV, there is some agreement not to support Apple CarPlay fully.
 

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Given Volvo wants to keep growing their market share, I doubt very much Apple CarPlay will be abandoned once Volvo replaces their custom “Sensus OS” with “Google Android’ on XC40 EV, and future models. IPhones are far from being a minor part of the global smartphone marketplace (and note how I said that to avoid the infamous Apple vs Google debate I won’t get into.). I, e.g. would not purchase another Volvo if they didn’t have CarPlay in their vehicle as I’m an iPhone kinda-guy and will not convert to an Android Smartphone just because of my automobile. Technically, I doubt there is no reason why Apple CarPlay could not coexist “on top” of Google Android, but of course, only time will tell as Volvo reveals the choices they’ve made.

OTOH, expanding Apple CarPlay functionality in existing Sensus Infotainment systems, as I believe the OP was originally asking about, is another thing. If there is enough demand, Volvo could certainly choose to continue enhancements. I personally won’t hold my breath for that. Sure it would be nice, and as a techie-kinda guy, I’d always appreciate new free-bee functionality. If I put on my old IT and “P&L Owner” business hats I wore for so many years, I doubt Volvo can see sufficient incremental new car sales just because they expend incremental time/resource on what is perhaps a “throw away effort” to implement these new Apple CarPlay functions — iOS 13 features are not going to be something that shows up in big Volvo marketing headlines, with everything else they want to say in a short span of time or print. (I say “throw away” of course, because the programming work won’t likely translate directly — or even be reusable — to the new Google Android platform they probably have most of their team focused on deploying with XC40 EV and beyond).

Like other businesses that need to move their apps along for a myriad of reasons over time, I suspect Volvo has effectively stabilized new Sensus development, and has only a minimal team working on it for the highest priority defects and/or development needed to support mandatory hardware component changes and/or new mid-life model refreshes that will be deployed while the new models using Google Android OS are Being prepared for market in parallel.
 

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Just returned from dealer on different issue. Service tech told me Volvo is releasing a large software update in mid DEC that is specifically to address iPhone issues, Bluetooth issues and more.
 

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Just returned from dealer on different issue. Service tech told me Volvo is releasing a large software update in mid DEC that is specifically to address iPhone issues, Bluetooth issues and more.

How did that conversation start?
 

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I was having an issue resolved with new software upload, and tech told me about upcoming software.
Ahh.. my XC40 is asking for a software update. I'm only at 8,000 miles so I have some time before I hit the 10k service.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Just returned from dealer on different issue. Service tech told me Volvo is releasing a large software update in mid DEC that is specifically to address iPhone issues, Bluetooth issues and more.
Won't hold my hopes up, but fingers crossed that they upgrade to the iOS 13 APIs.
 

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I notice a significant sound difference between listening through Bluetooth when wireless charging and when connected by charging cable through Apple Carplay. I have to turn up the volume to full on my car and phone listening through Bluetooth. When hard wired, the sound is louder and clearer, no comparison. I hate having the charging cord cluttering my car, but I need it for the sound experience.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
Although not part of the specific iOS 13 new APIs, wireless Carplay should offer similar sound experience with wired Carplay, since it connects over WiFi, not Bluetooth. Don't expect Volvo to release support for this though, since it's been available for a few years now and they didn't make any indication that they would update it, although all of the current lineup is equipped to support it.

I'm more excited though for functional issues which could be addressed by updating to the iOS 13 APIs, more specifically:
1. fullscreen Carplay support in the infotainment screen (safer than the current small and down-below-everything setup)
2. 2nd screen support which would allow Carplay maps to be displayed in the instrument cluster screen

I do believe that if Volvo updates to the new APIs, they would:
A. have one of the most compelling Carplay solutions on the market (due to the vertical layout of the center screen) which would allow fullscreen carplay. To my knowledge there's only one other manufacturer which offers Carplay in a vertical setup in Europe and they have already updated their systems to fullscreen support thanks to iOS 13 (i'm talking about Renault)
B. be the first manufacturer to offer 2nd screen support for Carplay (in the instrument cluster) - I suppose a lot of marketing could go into this
 
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