Some weeks ago I bought a wireless CarPlay adaptor for my new 2021 Toyota Camry. The Camry support CarPlay but only when connected with a lightning cable.

My experience with it to date has been mostly positive, with some caveats. The largest issue I have is its “Chinese knock-off” software interface. I don’t quite know how they are making this whole thing work, and not having had CarPlay before I don’t know what earlier generations of the software were like. However, the version that is installed on the CarPlay device has a “bootleg” feel. For example, native CarPlay has iconography for buttons. The CPlay device has icons within button borders and some of these seem slightly misaligned. I also notice on my podcast app that not all the interface elements seem quite the same, such as the speed of playback.

The other weird thing I notice is when playing back voice messages and other interactions with Siri. The volume is much lower than any other audio making it hard to hear. However, I’m reticent to blame this solely on the CPlay device. I think it may have something to do with the configuration of the audio in my car system? I don’t know, and I’m still trying to figure it out.

All that being said, the thing works. I keep waiting for it not to work and partly expecting it to fail, or drop the connection, but it works everytime. It supports multiple devices as well, with both my phone and my wife’s connected to it. It auto-switches based on last use and whichever device is available.

For short trips, I think this thing is great. If I’m travelling a longer distance, I’m still going to use the lightning cable. Would I buy it again? Yes, I would.

I also bought a custom-fit Chi charging pad. It’s not that great, but is necessary if you want to use the CPlay for a length of time and not kill your phone battery. I have found my phone slips off it too easily unless I put the phone in a case. As these things are designed differently to fit each kind of car, your mileage may vary.