Apple Maps update in iOS 14 will reduce electric car range anxiety

(Image credit: Apple)

Apple has confirmed a new EV Routing feature for electric car owners in Apple Maps, taking into consideration your vehicle's range and charging points along your route.

Announced during Apple's WWDC 2020 keynote, as part of the iOS 14 update for iPhones, the new electric car routing options is also joined by a new cycling transport choice.

Back to the electric car navigation though, and Apple says Maps will be able to tell what model of electric car you have, and thus know what it's average range is - suggesting charging stations along your route.

It will also know which charging stations your particular vehicle is compatible with, so you'll only be navigated to chargers that you can actually use.

However, it's not clear how many electric cars will be compatible with EV Routing at launch. Apple says it's working with manufacturers including BMW and Ford, but that's all we know for now. 

However, Ford's first all-electric car arrives this year - the Ford Mustang Mach-E - and it could be a prime candidate for the technology.

In-car enhancements for CarPlay too

Apple CarPlay is also getting improvements and new features with the iOS 14 update, with the ability to change the background of the CarPlay screen in your vehicle, plus the addition of new CarPlay-enabled apps.

(Image credit: Apple)

New apps including parking, electric car charging and rest stop information.

Apple is re-imagining the car key fob too, with a digital Car key available on the new 2021 BMW 5 Series. It means you'll be able to leave your physical car key at home, and use the NFC in your iPhone and car to unlock the car, start the engine and connect to CarPlay.

The digital key appears in the Wallet app, and you can share access to vehicles with others, setting limits to their access - which could be handy for parents.

Apple's iOS 14 update is expected to roll out to iPhones later this year - likely in September - but we'll confirm exactly when you can expect the new Apple Maps and CarPlay updates once we know more.

The Maps updates are currently confirmed for the US, Canada, the UK and Ireland, with more countries getting the new features in the future.

John McCann
Global Managing Editor

John joined TechRadar over a decade ago as Staff Writer for Phones, and over the years has built up a vast knowledge of the tech industry. He's interviewed CEOs from some of the world's biggest tech firms, visited their HQs and has appeared on live TV and radio, including Sky News, BBC News, BBC World News, Al Jazeera, LBC and BBC Radio 4. Originally specializing in phones, tablets and wearables, John is now TechRadar's resident automotive expert, reviewing the latest and greatest EVs and PHEVs on the market. John also looks after the day-to-day running of the site.