Weblink vs CarPlay: Which Should You Choose?

Smartphones have many essential apps that can come in handy while driving but can also be a hazardous distraction behind the wheel. 

Fortunately, systems like Weblink and Apple CarPlay make driving safer by helping us keep our eyes on the road. 

Both platforms let us to use the car’s interface for certain phone apps, but which is better?

Carplay is the best choice for most people due to it’s ease of use of and interface but is only available for iOS devices. However, Weblink is more accessible and has added Youtube functionality which Carplay lacks.  

Keep reading if you’re torn between Weblink vs CarPlay. 

This article will discuss both systems in detail along with their pros and cons to help you decide which one to choose. 

Using Weblink

Weblink acts like a bridge between your smartphone and car allowing you to project certain apps to the car’s screen. 

You can control weblink apps using your car’s touch panel and switch gear or simply cast your phone to view its contents through the in-dash screen.  

Weblink Compatibility

Weblink works with smartphones that run on the latest versions of iOS and Android but there are some system requirements for Weblink to run smoothly on your device.

Below are the system requirements and compatible operating systems for Weblink:

  • iOS version 14.0 and higher
  • Android version 7.0 and higher
  • The Android phone must be Android certified
  • The smartphone must have a hardware video decoder
  • Minimum CPU: 1.5 GHz Dual Core
  • Minimum RAM: 2GB

 

Weblink works with most head units of major brands, including: 

  • Pioneer
  • Alpine
  • Sony
  • Kenwood
  • JVC

How To Setup Weblink

Setting up Weblink may differ slightly depending on the car stereo you’re hooking it up to, but the connection procedure is generally similar 

You can refer to your car stereo owner’s manual for more specific steps.

Here are general instructions to connect your phone to your car stereo via Weblink: 

  1. Make sure the car stereo is Weblink compatible
  2. Download the Weblink Host app on your smartphone
  3. Read and accept the Terms of Service on the Weblink Host app
  4. Turn the car stereo on
  5. Use a certified USB cable to connect your smartphone to the vehicle’s USB input.
  6. Enable Weblink on the phone and car stereo settings.
  7. Keep the phone unlocked when using Weblink.

Available Apps on Weblink

Weblink supports a variety of apps that are relevant to in-car entertainment and functionality. 

However, the available apps vary depending on the head unit.

You can view the list of available apps on the Weblink host application.

Some popular apps that work with Weblink include: 

  • Waze
  • YouTube
  • Yelp

 

Weblink also allows you to cast your phone’s screen to your vehicle’s infotainment system, but functionality will be limited. 

For instance, you’ll be able to access Netflix, but the movie will not play on the car screen.

Weblink User Interface and Stability

Unfortunately, Weblink’s user interface isn’t as straightforward or responsive as Carplay’s. 

The system is a bit laggy, and there are instances when you may have to toggle from your phone to the head unit to get an app to work.

Many users have also complained about having difficulty establishing a connection. 

Multitasking isn’t one of Weblink’s strong suits because taking a call will block the map if you use the phone and navigation simultaneously.  

Weblink Pros and Cons

Like anything, weblink has it’s good and bad sides, so knowing what you’re getting into can go a long way.

Below are the pros and cons.

Pros

  • Works with Android and iOS phones
  • Available on many mainstream car stereo brands
  • Open to third-party apps

Cons

  • Since the phone needs to be unlocked while using Weblink, its battery gets drained significantly faster.
  • It does not support certain apps like Google Maps.
  • The interface is not as responsive or user-friendly compared to other systems.

Using CarPlay

wired carplay connection for comparison vs wireless carplay

You can use CarPlay with a lightning cable or wireless connection on compatible devices. 

Carplay allows you to use most of your phone’s functions without touching it. 

You can use voice commands, the car’s controls, and the touchscreen to operate most of your apps, such as navigation and music apps.

CarPlay Compatibility

Although Carplay is available on most new cars, it only works with iOS devices.  iPhones, starting from the iPhone 5 and up, that run on iOS 7.1 or above will support CarPlay. 

For a complete list of automobiles that have CarPlay click here.

How To Set Up CarPlay

iPhone Cable Connected to CarPlay
 

CarPlay connects to your vehicle’s infotainment system using a USB lightning cable, but newer systems also offer wireless connectivity

Follow these simple steps to set up CarPlay using a cable:

  1. Make sure the car supports Apple CarPlay
  2. Turn your car on
  3. Connect your iPhone to the car with your lightning cable 
  4. Accept the prompts on your phone and infotainment system.

 

 To connect wirelessly:

  1. Turn your car on
  2. Go to Settings on your iPhone
  3. Select General and click on CarPlay
  4. Select your vehicle from the available list
  5. Check the connection by using your car’s voice control button to see if Siri works

 

You can also connect to CarPlay wirelessly through your car’s infotainment settings.

The method differs between cars though, so you’ll need to check your owner’s manual for specific instructions.  

Available Apps on CarPlay

CarPlay works with many popular apps that are useful for in-car applications.

However, for safety reasons, apps like YouTube and Netflix will not work since watching videos is strongly discouraged while driving.  

More and more apps are becoming available on CarPlay, but here’s a list of some that are readily available:

So, whether you need directions, want to play music, shop, or join a meeting, CarPlay has got you covered.

CarPlay User Interface and Stability

CarPlay is unmatched when it comes to its user interface and stability. 

Other systems are simply not as easy to use. But CarPlay is like having an iPad in your vehicle.

In fact, there are phone apps that mimic the iOS interface for other operating systems.

CarPlay Pros and Cons

Like Weblink, CarPlay isn’t perfect, and the pros and cons may help you decide which one you should choose between the two platforms.

Pros

  • Easy to set up and use
  • Considered to have the best user interface
  • Increasing compatibility with more vehicles
  • Works with apps that offer navigation, music, messaging, shopping, and more

Cons

  • Only works with iOS devices
  • Does not directly work with video apps like YouTube

Conclusion

If you’re not sure which is the better option with CarPlay vs. Weblink, the clear choice should be CarPlay if you have an iPhone. 

It gives you access to all the apps you need while driving and is more user-friendly and reliable. 

Weblink will work with Android devices, but you should also consider using Android Auto if you have an Android phone.

Alex
Alex

I loved my car but was frustrated with my media system. So I upgraded my stereo, making silly wires and precarious phone mounts a thing of the past. The Apple Car Play stereo was so good I wanted to show more people how this could be done and truly upgrade their cars multimedia system!

Founder
StereoUpgrade.com

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