Apple Announces CarPlay – The Best iPhone Experience On Four Wheels


It is another year, and that means another new range of products from Apple. From the iPhone 5 to the MacBook Air, the new devices are beautiful and as always come with brand new features making them essential buys for all Apple fans, and for those who like to keep up to date with new technologies. Recently, Apple has begun to move into other market areas and the highlight is, of course, their CarPlay initiative which haloes excitement and ingenuity.

CarPlay is a new way of connecting iPhones to cars that combine the physical interface on steering wheels with Siri technology. It allows drivers to access text messages, music and sat-nav tools whilst on the go and without having to pick up their phones and break the law, something that has become a more pressing security issue lately.

The CarPlay announcement is not only surprising because Apple is moving into a market they have never attempted to get involved in before, but also because it represents the first time they have worked alongside third party organisations, allowing car manufacturers to be involved directly in the development of the app later to be implemented into their cars.

A number of manufacturers including BMW, Vauxhall, Land Rover and Kia announced that in the future, their cars will come with the option of CarPlay integration. For now if you want it this year, you may have to look to Volvo, Mercedes Benz and Ferrari, who have already announced that certain models of their cars will come with CarPlay. This is good news for iPhone fans, especially for those who have picked up a brand new model of their iPhone.

It is certainly going to make the future of car manufacturing interesting as Apple are regarded as an industry leader for technology, and the inclusion of CarPlay in vehicles may become in demand, outstripping other rivals and third party products. Already, technology is a high priority for people buying new and second hand cars. Craig Gray, Service Centre Manager at Car Shop, has reported an increase in demand for used cars that have better technology and the latest tech installed, with Bluetooth being the top of the list.

CarPlay is compatible with the iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c and the iPhone 5, and will be available on selected cars from this year. It remains to be seen how it will affect the car market going forward, but whatever happens, it is likely that as always, Apple will lead the way. Perhaps this initiative is an indication that Apple has once again started to innovate, something many people have been requesting ever since Steve Jobs passed away early October, 2011.

Apple CarPlay – Innovating In-Car iPhone Experience

Apple CarPlay iPhone Integration

Apple CarPlay iPhone Integration

Apple CarPlay iPhone Integration

Apple CarPlay iPhone Integration

Apple CarPlay iPhone Integration

Images: Apple

Bit Rebels


Outdoor Stereos, Training Wheels, and Dropbox Searches


Readers offer their best tips for creating an outdoor stereo, getting better training wheels on a bicycle, and searching Dropbox with Everything.

Every day we receive boatloads of great reader tips in our inbox, but for various reasons—maybe they’re a bit too niche, maybe we couldn’t find a good way to present it, or maybe we just couldn’t fit it in—the tip didn’t make the front page. From the Tips Box is where we round up some of our favorites for your buffet-style consumption. Got a tip of your own to share? Add it in the comments, email it to tips at, or share it over at our user-run blog, Hackerspace.

Outdoor Stereos, Training Wheels, and Dropbox Searches

Create a DIY Outdoor Stereo On the Cheap

David Sherwood shares his outdoor stereo setup:

I was looking for a way to create an outdoor weatherproof setup for my iPhone, amp, speaker setup.

50 bucks for an outdoor box. No way.

Sterilite box 4 bucks with latches. Small car amp, klipsch outdoor speakers. All I needed to do was:

  1. Drill holes
  2. Mount
  3. Attach cords
  4. Seal in cords with silicone

Now the patio has a decent doubt system that is safe in the weather.

Outdoor Stereos, Training Wheels, and Dropbox Searches

Use Rollerblade Wheels in Place of Training Wheels

Alan Wojtowicz gets some better training wheels:

I always hated the training wheels that came from the store.

I salvaged some wheels from in-line skates, added a washer as a spacer to the original brackets and there you go.

Looks cool and doesn’t have the noise of the original plastic wheels.

Search Dropbox with Everything for Windows

Stephen Thompson fixes an annoyance with the Everything search program for Windows:

I noticed a problem with Everything not finding files in my Dropbox, and I found a fix on this site with a video explaining the solution (shown above, skip to 5min 15 sec mark).

Basically once Everything is open, you have to:

  1. Go to Tools > Options > Exclude (as explained in the video it’s actually misnamed and should be called “Exclude/Include”)
  2. Make sure “Exclude files and folders” is checked
  3. Click the “Add Folder” button and browse to your Dropbox folder.
  4. Breathe a sigh of contentment that Dropbox and Everything like each other now

Outdoor Stereos, Training Wheels, and Dropbox Searches

Shrink Multi-Column Twitter Clients with Win+Up and Win+Down

Here’s a little tip I discovered myself: I don’t like to use multi-column Twitter clients, mostly because they take up too much space on my screen. I want it docked to the side with one column, like Twitter for Mac or DestroyTwitter (a Windows client that I don’t like very much, despite its single-column interface). Well, I just re-discovered a great Windows shortcut that does the job well enough: Win+Up and Win+Down.

Now, I just resize TweetDeck to be one column tall on my left monitor. When I want to access a tab other than my home screen, I just hit Win+Up to maximize it, making the whole client easier to traverse (since some popups won’t show if the window is only one column wide). Then I can just hit Win+Down to put it back when I’m done. It isn’t perfect, but it’s better than nothing!