Apple released an update to iOS 8 on Wednesday, which adds wireless CarPlay as well as some fixes to bugs in the existing wired CarPlay feature, said reports from AppleInsider and other blogs.
With wireless CarPlay, drivers need not plug their iPhone into their radio. CarPlay features can launch at the press of a button on the steering wheel or radio while your phone is in your pocket or purse or simply nearby.
The catch is that wireless CarPlay works over WiFi, not Bluetooth, and no radios currently have activated both WiFi and CarPlay to our knowledge.
In a possible exception, an advanced radio from Parrot shown at CES, called the RNB6 offers both WiFi and CarPlay but it has no firm ship date nor price at present.
Kenwood said it does not expect to offer wireless CarPlay this year. And Pioneer confirmed that it does not expect to offer WiFi this year.
Alpine did not respond to inquiries on wireless CarPlay.
Suppliers said Apple choose WiFi for wireless CarPlay because Bluetooth does not have sufficient bandwidth to support CarPlay features.
Apple’s new iOS 8.3 update also fixes some bugs with standard CarPlay including an issue where the keyboard could appear on the CarPlay screen when it shouldn’t, said 9 to 5 Mac.