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You Won't Believe How Easy it is to Upgrade your 2018 Camry and Sienna for Apple CarPlay

I have a service appointment at my local Toyota dealership this week to add Apple CarPlay to my 2018 Toyota Camry XLE. This is really exciting news for me! Thousands of Camry and Sienna owners will be notified in the coming with the same great news.


In a move to strengthen its image and branding with its multimedia entertainment features and benefits, Toyota is offering a software update to retrofit 2018 Camry and 2018 Sienna vehicles with the popular program Apple CarPlay. They will also be updating systems with Amazon Alexa compatibility as well. On a side note, Android Auto will not be included in this update, for all the Google users reading this.

Eligible Camry and Sienna owners will be notified by email starting May 15th and running through the Summer. They will be instructed to contact their local Toyota service departments to schedule their software update appointments.

Based on initial testing, installation time will run anywhere from 15 minutes to one hour. Average installation time has averaged 30 minutes so far. The length of time you will actually be waiting at your dealership for full installation depends on each individual dealership’s traditional wait times.

Toyota is recommending that dealerships perform this installation at no charge to customers, in order to improve its image as a leader in multimedia technology. However, they do caution this is determined by each dealership, and that there may be a small installation service fee charged.

I bought my 2018 Toyota Camry XLE a year ago, and I was disappointed to learn Toyota was adding Apple CarPlay for the 2019 models the following year (See 2019 Toyota RAV4 Trim Levels Explained). I even briefly considered trading mine in for the 2019 to take advantage of CarPlay. I couldn’t be more thrilled with this news that I will be rewarded for my loyalty instead of punished. I hope many others can take advantage of this exciting upgrade!

What do you think of this news? Will you be scheduling your Apple CarPlay upgrade this Summer too?

In addition to writing for Torque News, I also run a popular Toyota review and how-to YouTube channel called “Toyotajeff in Raleigh.” I encourage everyone to check it out and subscribe.

Also see: The Man Behind the One Million Mile Tacoma.

You can reach Jeff Teague on Twitter at @toyotajeff1 and tweet him tips for new stories.


Uri (not verified)    May 6, 2019 - 5:21PM

I wish Toyota Highlander would also have this infotainment system. But Camry and Sienna is different than the Highlander. Jeff, do you think Toyota Highlander will also have Apple CarPlay?

Matt M (not verified)    May 9, 2019 - 12:18AM

I have contacted my dealership in Saint Louis and they can’t confirm when they will have the download available. I read it would be available to the dealerships as early as May 6th, and I want to set-up my appointment as I have been waiting since purchasing my vehicle about a year ago. I would like to get it before the email notification on the 15th. Any suggestions. Matt

Jeff Teague    May 9, 2019 - 11:34AM

In reply to by Matt M (not verified)

Hi Matt! I think each dealership is having different experiences with this update. My dealership is having a difficult time getting the update to upload properly. I've contacted Toyota to let them know. I want to make sure no customer has difficulty with this process. I don't have any suggestions though as of yet...stay tuned! Jeff

Daniel (not verified)    May 12, 2019 - 6:30PM

I just took my Camry to the dealer yesterday 5-11-2019 to have Appleplay install it took them five hours to install my car was the first car they had to install it on. It works just great I’m glad I had it install

Arielle (not verified)    July 2, 2022 - 6:25PM

In reply to by Prasanna (not verified)

Its like you read my mind! You seem to know so much about this, like you wrote the book in it or something.
I think that you could do with some pics to drive the message home a little bit, but
instead of that, this is fantastic blog. A great read.
I'll definitely be back. donate for ukraine

Matthew M (not verified)    May 14, 2019 - 10:45PM

Anyone else successfully had if installed. I called Toyota and they said it should be available Mid-May, and that I should receive an email regarding the update. As of last week, my dealership in STL did not have it. Any updates would be greatly appreciated.

Jeff Teague    May 17, 2019 - 1:57PM

In reply to by Matthew M (not verified)

Hey Matthew! Tell your dealership it should be available for all radio systems now. I had an assurance from the manager of the program at Toyota. It's a software direct update through Toyota service. They should have it...jeff

Dan Cheramie (not verified)    June 11, 2019 - 7:39PM

In reply to by Jeff Teague

Got email from Toyota yesterday telling me my 2018 Camry XLE v6 with Entune 3.0 audio plus was available for Apple CarPlay upgrade. Took it to dealership today and they said my car was ineligible for the upgrade because it has a JBL system. They said the service bulletin didn’t include JBL. Why would I have gotten the email from Toyota if my vehicle wasn’t eligible? Havs anyone else run into this problem?

Barry (not verified)    June 20, 2019 - 9:01AM

In reply to by Dan Cheramie (not verified)

My car is in Service right now but the technician told me they were un-successful with 2 camrys last week after several hours and that the attempt could damage my system and Toyota would not be responsible for the damage....... wth ?
I received an email as well to upgrade my 3.0 Entune system and I also have the JBL...... they will be responsible, I promise you !

Jaskaran Singh (not verified)    May 15, 2019 - 7:36PM

I just recieved a call from Toyota and now I have an appointment tomorrow for the retrofit upgrade. They told me it was going to be for $85, which is a little pricey, however, it is CarPlay.

Fish (not verified)    May 16, 2019 - 8:42PM

Has there been any explanation as to why it's just those 2 models and not others? So frustrating. The Entune system is such a piece of crap.

Matt M (not verified)    May 17, 2019 - 7:53PM

I stopped by the dealership and after speaking with the service manager he indicated they had the update, but were training the staff on it. Leaving a little discouraged, I got a call within an hour setting up a 2 hour appointment for Wednesday at 8am to have it installed... fingers crossed all goes well. Excited to at least have an appointment! Thanks for all the posts...

Jeff Teague    May 18, 2019 - 8:42AM

In reply to by Matt M (not verified)

No problem Matt! Nice to see you here too in addition to my YouTube Channel. I'm sure there was a learning curve and it caught a lot of service departments off-guard at first. I know it did mine. I was their first "victim"...oops I mean customer. I love my CarPlay now on my Camry. Let me know how it goes man. Jeff

JonB (not verified)    May 18, 2019 - 9:44AM

Have appointment to get the CarPlay upgrade on 4/28. What I have not been able to find out is: will my iPhone have to be connected to system using lightning cord when using CarPlay?

JonB (not verified)    May 28, 2019 - 1:32PM

In reply to by JonB (not verified)

Had upgrade installed by dealer today. Took 2 1/2 hours and at no cost. Don't know why it took so long, but time was a half hour less than the time spent on upgrading the first 2 vehicles that were serviced at the dealership. Works really well.

JEFF W (not verified)    May 20, 2019 - 11:21AM

Yes. Carplay will only work with the lightning cable connected. Toyota does not have wireless Carplay. Most auto companies require the cable.
FYI, I , along with others have done the installation ourselves. The files are on a well known Toyota website ( not hosted by Toyota). It requires a usb update to the head unit with the files . Took 45 min for mine. Works great.

Lonny T. Stocker (not verified)    November 3, 2019 - 2:23PM

In reply to by JEFF W (not verified)

Would love to get your information about the DYI retrofit. I have a Toyota 2018 camry SE. Just got it yesturday. Can you give some tips and links? Thanks