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Apple iOS takes aim at the car

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Apple vice president Eddy Cue, presenting iOS in the Car on 10 June in San Francisco. (Apple)

On 10 June, at Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference, the computer giant debuted new automotive integration on its forthcoming iOS 7 software.

The new feature, called iOS in the Car, will bring phone calls, iMessages, music and Apple Maps to a vehicle's in-dash display.

As car companies increase their infotainment capabilities, making sure their hardware plays nice with iOS is a growing concern. Successful integration would save automakers from making costly hardware upgrades.

According to Apple, 95% of new cars sold have some integration with iOS devices, but the new feature will pair even more of the company’s offerings with vehicles’ in-dash displays – and keep drivers from glancing down at their iPhones.

The new feature allows drivers to either use voice commands through Siri, or interact with the familiar iOS via their infotainment screens. "You can make phone calls, play music, go to maps, [and] get your iMessages right on the screen in your car, or eyes-free using Siri," said Apple vice president Eddy Cue during the keynote. (Cue, incidentally, is a member of Ferrari's board of directors.)

Showing a bare-bones mock-up of iOS in the Car, Cue noted that a number of automakers – among them Honda, Mercedes-Benz, Nissan, Jaguar and yes, Ferrari – would integrate iOS in 2014.