CarPlay WiFi at Tesla? Test of Carpuride, a box for cars without CarPlay

By 2023, CarPlay will be installed (automatically or as an option) by almost 100% of manufacturers, with a few rare exceptions, such as Tesla, which prefers to bet on its own system.

Even Google is a good player and allows manufacturers to integrate CarPlay WiFi into vehicles running Android Automotive ! It must be said that some applications, such as Apple Music, Waze, Google Maps, PodCasts and many others, are particularly effective on this iPhone screen mirroring system.

Only solution for Tesla or for old vehicles not equipped with CarPlay: Add an external screen! With Carpuride you will see that the box offered here is very effective and very complete…even if there are still obvious compromises.

The Tesla case and more

Despite the return to favor of Tim Cook, Elon Musk still doesn’t seem to have decided to integrate CarPlay into his vehicles. If the arrival of Apple Music (very recently) is widely welcomed, there is still a lot of software missing from Tesla that we would like to see arrive in these cars. Starting with Waze, for speed cameras and accident zones, a real Google Maps (which knows roadblocks well) or even TomTom, the Message application (with Siri), the calendar…

Third-party apps are also on the rise. If CarPlay doesn’t offer a video player, it allows you to search for charging stations and plan routes with terminals of all brands (ChargePoint, ChargeMap, ABRP…), to access numerous audio contents (Amazon Music, Overcast, Audible, Vox, Downcast), to search for a parking space (EasyPark), to be warned about speed cameras (Coyote ) or even to send messages (WhatsApp, Telegram…)

CarPlay WiFi at Tesla?  Test of Carpuride, a box for cars without CarPlay

The case with Tesla is a bit special, because Elon Musk’s strategy has always been to create his own OS, with native applications, where CarPlay would like to completely replace the integrated system. The latest version, presented at WWDC, goes even much further, Android Automotive style, by appearing on all screens and by offering a total alternative to the manufacturers’ operating system… It is clear that the effort is also economical: when a user buys an app for CarPlay, for example, he doesn’t spend his money on Tesla’s Premium connection… and the same goes for Android Auto/Automotive!

Carpuride: a substitute screen

It’s been a few years of manufacturers offer CarPlay-compatible displays must be added, either in place of the old screen, or placed somewhere on the dashboard.

CarPlay WiFi at Tesla?  Test of Carpuride, a box for cars without CarPlay

After testing many accessories of this nature, the Carpuride case seemed to me for the first time really usable, or at least at the height of the best systems on the market.

CarPlay WiFi at Tesla?  Test of Carpuride, a box for cars without CarPlay

Already, 7-inch (my model) or 9-inch (optional) IPS panel shows a correct resolution, although we remain in HD (1024*600), it is quite suitable for this screen size and considering the distance from the case. But above all, the panel is very responsive, with a capacitive screen compared to a modern tablet.

CarPlay WiFi at Tesla?  Test of Carpuride, a box for cars without CarPlay

The brightness is also sufficient, even in the middle of summer, although a small notch below Tesla’s e.g. But compared to a newer Duster it is much taller!

CarPlay WiFi in Android system

When the box is switched on, it’s a small Android system that pops up, with the same sort of layout as CarPlay : large icons, settings and some standard applications.

CarPlay WiFi at Tesla?  Test of Carpuride, a box for cars without CarPlay

He is necessary to pair your iPhone in Bluetooth so he can access CarPlay over WiFi. It is as simple as on a classic vehicle and in two minutes you can start the application I play which finally gives access to CarPlay.

CarPlay WiFi at Tesla?  Test of Carpuride, a box for cars without CarPlay

But if you prefer Android-Auto or MirrorLink (for Android), connect a USB key, an SD card, start right radio or simply broadcast your audio via Bluetooth, this small integrated OS is already very fully built-in.

CarPlay WiFi at Tesla?  Test of Carpuride, a box for cars without CarPlay

Many audio outputs

As you can see, there’s even a microphone on the side (to receive calls if you don’t have a bluetooth kit in the car). We also find the connection classic with SD card, output plug and USB plug, as well as a bus for any reversing camera – available as an optional extra!

CarPlay WiFi at Tesla?  Test of Carpuride, a box for cars without CarPlay

Although Apple Music is now available from Tesla, it is important to be able to get the sound out of the box correctly.

Carpuride actually offers multiple outputs:

The speaker by the way (not incredible, but it works)
an output socket (if you have a post on the car)
bluetooth (if you have an external speaker or something)

CarPlay WiFi at Tesla?  Test of Carpuride, a box for cars without CarPlay

On the other hand, I couldn’t use CarPlay WiFi together (which uses Bluetooth for synchronization) and set the Tesla as a Bluetooth receiver.

CarPlay WiFi at Tesla?  Test of Carpuride, a box for cars without CarPlay

On the other hand, on the iPhone, you can set the output sound to the Tesla’s Bluetoothand the sound from CarPlay will therefore go directly to the car’s speakers – practical!

A suction cup and a cigarette lighter socket

CarPlay WiFi at Tesla?  Test of Carpuride, a box for cars without CarPlay

The easiest way to hang the suitcase is to use the supplied suction cup.

CarPlay WiFi at Tesla?  Test of Carpuride, a box for cars without CarPlay

It held up pretty well during our tests (over several months), but if you prefer to use a sticky mount on the dashboardit’s also possible (but I don’t recommend it, because it risks getting the stuffing on board)

CarPlay WiFi at Tesla?  Test of Carpuride, a box for cars without CarPlay

Another prerequisite is a cigarette lighter plug to power the box, which is not independent. On the other hand, it is possible to plug the iPhone into the USB socket to recharge it, which is often useful when using CarPlay over long distances. This still leaves 2 cables dangling on the central part.

So should we buy?

After several months of almost daily use in a Tesla Model 3, I must admit that it is often useful to be able to combine CarPlay and the integrated GPS : Google Maps remains more reliable on complicated journeys (in Italy, with blocked roads or to optimize journey times), Waze is essential for speed cameras and accident zones, and although Apple Music is now available from Tesla, this is not yet the case with the majority of ‚Äčthird party manufacturers.

CarPlay WiFi at Tesla?  Test of Carpuride, a box for cars without CarPlay

And rightly so, this box will be perfect for anyone who has an older vehicle, without CarPlay and sometimes even without GPS. Admittedly, it is a small budget, but it must be set in parallel with the price of the options offered by the manufacturers.

Reliable, efficient and really practical, the only limitation was having to remove it every time we park in an easily visible place, although I doubt that GPS thefts are still truly legion. Another defect, the case also slightly masks the central visibility, but it didn’t bother me too much – at worst, you can move it to a less critical angle.

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