Porsche Taycan Becomes First Car to Integrate Apple Music, Uses Native Voice Assistant Over Siri
Apple Music will integrate into a car for the first time when the Porsche Taycan arrives this fall, a. A three-year subscription to the streaming service comes with the car, Porsche’s first electric vehicle, controllable through a touchscreen and the native Porsche voice assistant, rather than Apple’s own Siri.
The Taycan runs Apple Music much the way a car built with Android Automotive handle Google’s streaming service, except using the Porsche voice assistant to search by song or album titles, play radio stations, or personal playlists. Apple Music has only been accessible in other cars when connected to a smartphone running the streaming service through platforms like Apple CarPlay. That’s still an option with the Taycan, for instance, if someone would rather listen using Spotify or Pandora, but it’s unnecessary for Apple Music. The Taycan integration is part of a larger partnership between Porsche and Apple. Current owners of several recent Porsche models will receive six months of Apple Music for free, and the car company has created its own playlists on Apple Music.
“Listening to music while driving can be an electrifying feeling,” vice president of Apple Music and international content Oliver Schusser said in a statement. “Since Apple Music launched, we’ve been working to bring our customers the best music experience possible in the car, and Porsche has been on the cutting edge in this space. Porsche builds sports cars at the highest level and today, with the introduction of the Taycan, customers now can choose Apple Music built-in seamlessly to find the perfect soundtrack for every drive.”
Porsche started adding voice controls to its cars a few years ago, launching the current Voice Pilot system last year. Voice Pilot understands more than 100 commands for environmental, entertainment, and navigational tasks, including understanding a destination request even without an address. Porsche doesn’t say if the AI underlying the voice assistant was built in-house or if it uses a partner platform. Automotive voice technology mainstay Cerence includes Porsche on the list of brands using its technology, and claims that 54% of cars produced globally have some of its products inside, which is suggestive at least. It is notable that its just Apple Music, not Siri, that Porsche is adding. Unlike Googles’s deal with Groupe PSA to integrate the Android Automotive operating system into European car brands like Citroën, Peugeot, and Vauxhall, Apple’s voice AI is left out of the picture. Between Google and automotive-focused AI developers like Cerence, Apple may have simply decided its not worth what it would cost to compete with a general car voice assistant and to stick to bringing products like Apple Music to existing platforms.