Alpine has a new way to get Apple’s CarPlay in your vehicle of choice: The iLX-007. The new aftermarket entertainment deck supports Apple’s in-car software solution, which translates some of the functions of your iPhone into a format more palatable for use on the road, including Maps, Phone, Message, Music and CarPlay-enabled apps like the recently-updated Rdio. CarPlay is available on a select group of cars rolling off the lot as a built-in feature, but if you want to get it in your old jalopy, so far you’ve only had the new Pioneer AppRadio 4 (and a helpful firmware update for older models) to choose from.
The new offering from Alpine means more selection for users looking to give their older vehicles a little taste of the future, but it’s still going to be a tall order for most: Alpine’s offering is a bit larger than the AppRadio 4 at 7-inches, but it’s also $800, which is a full $200 more than the MSRP on Pioneer’s offering. The iLX-007 does offer rear view camera system compatibility, three 2 volt priest, and Alpine’s own proprietary tech for better playback of compressed digital media.
The big selling point that Alpine is pushing here is CarPlay, however, and the fact is that it’s going to be mostly the same regardless of your brand of hardware provider. Apple has designed it to be pretty much universally consistent, but elements like whether or not the head unit has a capacitive touchscreen (this one does) for better touch input response are going to make things a little different OEM to OEM.
The Alpine looks like a solid choice for those eager to get CarPlay in their cars, without having to spend the money to get a whole new car, however. It supports CarPlay’s voice-powered Siri interaction, and it works with Alpine’s TuneIt iOS app for equalizer manipulation and time correction, among other tweaks. If you’re looking for the most extensible and customizable experience in a digital car deck, as well as everything CarPlay has to offer, this could be what you’ve been waiting for.