We don’t have many cars even today with Wireless CarPlay capabilities. There are a selected few models that come with inbuilt Wireless CarPlay feature from Apple. Even though there are a few third-party alternatives available, they mostly cost you anywhere around $450-$500 at the very least. Even if you are paying $1000 for the third-party options, the experience you get is quite low in resolution and there’s a pretty small 7” display on which you can watch it all. Above that, the installation is always a hassle as well.
Of course, you can spend all that money to get the precious Wireless CarPlay feature to your car, but what if that’s not affordable for you? And, what if you are not ready to replace that original system you get with your car?
To be fortunate, you have a relatively cheap alternative available as well and it is pretty easy to install too. This plug-and-play alternative to third party Wireless CarPlay options will give you a complete Wireless Apple CarPlay access within $150 only. In fact, you can cut down the costs even further if you’re already in possession of some spare Android Tablet which can be used in the process.
Yes, it’s about taking advantage of your Android Tablet that comes with the Wireless CarPlay adapter. You can pair them together for getting full access to Wireless CarPlay feature no matter what car you own.
Just make sure that your chosen Android tablet is running on Android 4.4 at least because otherwise it may not work out. Even those cheap Fire tablets which run on Fire OS (an Android fork) would do absolutely perfectly if you know exactly how it works. All you need to do is to install the Android app APK that comes along your adapter and your tablet will give you the desired capabilities.
This is a unique setup that offers all the flexibility you need. You may start things off with a typical cheap Android tablet for testing it out to see if it works or not and then you can opt for something that features a bigger and better screen. When you are looking to upgrade, for instance, you can opt for something like Fire HD 10. In fact, you can even go with expensive alternatives like the iPad Pro-style Samsung Galaxy Tab A. And, if you love to add some Tesla-style to your vehicle, it would be a great idea to opt for Samsung Galaxy View – the 18” tablet which is definitely going to spark things up when you enjoy Apple Wireless CarPlay feature in your vehicle. All these options would work great with the Wireless CarPlay dongle mentioned above. Remember that the dongle is also compatible with the wired-only CarPlay option too and you can use that also if you want to. Obviously, the later options tend to be expensive and you’ll end up paying as much the amount as you would have to pay for the third-party headunits offering inbuilt CarPlay support. However, none of these third-party headunits are going to give you the big high-resolution screens as well as the flexibility you need for the Wireless CarPlay feature.
Another thing worth mentioning here is that as the tablets run on Android OS, there will be no limitations whatsoever to only stick to the CarPlay feature because you will be able to run your favorite native Android applications as well and enjoy a unique experience in your car. That’s another feature which you would not be able to enjoy should you opt for the third-party headunits having in-built CarPlay option. In case, if your chosen tablet is running on Android 6.0, or anything above that, you’d be the lucky one to be able to enjoy native Android side-by-side multitasking option so that you can run your favorite Android apps alongside Wireless CarPlay from Apple.
The best thing about this quick hack is that you get support for all the iOS versions including the latest iOS 13 as well. There is support for everything from Siri commands via mic and steering wheel control to iOS 13 dashboard view.
So, if you ask us, we’d definitely go with this cheap alternative where you can test things up with a cheaper Android tablet first and then get the full high-res functionality by opting for an upgraded tablet. There are quite a few options available and you can start exploring them right now. Do share with us in comments if it works out for you.
Here are some options that you need to consider for it to work:
- Wireless + Wired CarPlay Adapter
- Wired-only CarPlay Adapter
- Fire 7 (Refurb)
- Fire 7 (New)
- Fire HD 8
- Fire HD 10
- Samsung Galaxy Tab A
- Samsung Galaxy S5e
- Samsung Galaxy View
- USB-A to USB-C (needed for Galaxy Tab A and Galaxy S5e)
- USB-A to micro USB (needed for Galaxy View and Fire tablets)