Cadillac's entire lineup of 2016 models gets a major infotainment upgrade this summer with improvements to CUE and integration with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. There's one major exception for now, though. The SRX retains the old system until its all-new generation, called the XT5, debuts early in the 2016 calendar year.

"When we transition into all new product lines, we will evolve the naming convention to suit the new classification we have announced. So SRX becomes XT5 next year," company spokesman David Caldwell said in an email to Autoblog. Earlier spy shots and rumors suggest the XT5 might be offered with a turbocharged four-cylinder and naturally aspirated six-cylinder engines, plus a nine-speed automatic transmission.

For the rest of Cadillac's models, CarPlay arrives with the launch of the 2016 vehicles, and Android Auto joins later. Using either of them requires a connection via USB, and they add a new projection icon on the CUE screen. Once activated, both systems integrate with driver's phone and incorporate features like navigation, music, and contacts. They can also accept voice commands.

Even for those that don't want to hook up a smartphone, CUE should work better thanks to a more powerful processor. Start-up times for the infotainment system are expected to be faster, and Cadillac claims that it's also more responsive for voice recognition, navigation searches, and media. The navigation interface is simplified, as well. The Escalade, CTS, and XTS can now be ordered with a 360-degree camera system to display on the screen.

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Cadillac Enhances Phone Integration for 2016 Models with Apple CarPlay, CUE Upgrades

APPLE CARPLAY AVAILABLE AT LAUNCH; ANDROID AUTO COMING LATER IN MODEL YEAR
2015-06-09

NEW YORK – Cadillac's 2016 model year products will feature enhanced connectivity and control, including the addition of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, the predominant new systems for in-car phone integration. These additions are part of a broader enhancement of CUE, Cadillac's user experience, with new features and a faster, streamlined operation.

Apple CarPlay will debut in 2016 Cadillac models featuring CUE's 8-in multi-touch screen except the SRX Crossover, a model that will move to an all-new generation in early 2016. Android Auto is expected to be phased into 2016 production at a later date. The 2016 model year will begin this summer.

"Cadillac's product transformation includes continuing upgrades to connectivity and in-car technology," says David Leone, Executive Chief Engineer. "In 2015 Cadillac became the first luxury brand to feature broad use of wireless charging and 4G LTE Wi-Fi connectivity, and now in 2016 we're moving quickly to enhance phone integration and overall system performance."

Phone Integration

Cadillac CUE provides owners a smart and simple way to access both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. A "Projection" icon will appear on the CUE screen, to enable simpler, easier access to key smartphone functions, including navigation, contacts, hands-free text messaging and select applications supported by Apple or Google.

Apple CarPlay takes the iPhone features you'd want to access while driving and puts them on the vehicle's display in a smart, simple manner. This allows drivers to make calls, send and receive messages and listen to music right from the touchscreen or by voice via Siri. Apple CarPlay supported apps include Phone, Messages, Maps, Music and compatible third party apps. A full list of those apps can be found at Apple.com/ios/carplay.

Android Auto is built around Google Maps, Google Now and the ability to talk to Google, as well as a growing audio and messaging app ecosystem that includes WhatsApp, Skype, Google Play Music, Spotify, and podcast players. A full list of supported apps is available at g.co/androidauto.

Many features can be controlled via voice commands through a steering wheel button, helping drivers spend more time with eyes on the road and hands on the wheel. In addition, Cadillac added wireless charging and OnStar 4G LTE Wi-Fi service in the 2015 model year.

Both phone integration systems require the phone to be connected via USB. Apple CarPlay requires iOS 7.1 or higher or an iPhone 5 or later or higher, Android Auto requires Android Lollipop operating system.

CUE Enhancements

A more powerful processor will be added to CUE for all 2016 models, enabling faster system start-up, voice recognition, navigation searches, and media playing.

For the navigation system, the control structure has been simplified for easier destination entry and quicker destination searches. Map screens have been redesigned for easier use, including one-touch control of commonly used features like "muting" voiced navigation instructions and route cancellation.

For the Escalade, CTS and XTS product lines, the Cadillac CUE screen will add Surround Vision, a 360-degree view of the vehicle's perimeter. Driving mode information will be expanded to the screen as well.

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