CPLAY2air Vs. CarLinkit Wireless Carplay Adapters (2024)

Adding wireless CarPlay adapters adds an elegant modern look to your car. There are many CarPlay adapters in the market, but our main focus will be CPLAY2air and CarLinkit.

Both of these CarPlay can be connected to your iPhone for hands-free control. However, the two differ when it comes to design and size.

This guide is a deep comparison of the two CarPlay adapters. Let’s get into it:

A Quick Comparison Table

Connectivity TechnologyBluetooth, USBRCA, Bluetooth, USB
Phone SupportiPhoneiPhone
PriceCheaperA bit expensive
Dimensions3.23 x 1.57 x 0.55 inches9.4 x 6.4 x 7.3 inches

Key Differences between CPLAY2air And CarLinkit

  • Design And Build

The CPLAY2air is flimsier than the CarLinkit.

The CarLinkit is a little bulkier than the CPLAY2air.

On the front of the CarLinkit, there’s an LED for power and CarPlay.

Its cleaner design makes it more discrete than the CPLAY2air.

It comes in Black, Silver, and Space Grey.

The CPLAY2air comes in black and silver, making it slightly subtler than the CarLinkit.

  • Wireless Connectivity

The CPLAY2air has Bluetooth 4.0, which allows connecting to mobile devices and computers using the CPLAY2air application.

The C device has a couple of features; it remembers up to 8 devices, which means you can pair it with your smartphone or anyone else’s without any problem. Even if you switch from one device to another, there’ll be no loss of power. The CPLAY2air also allows for a wireless connection between your mobile device and car stereo.

The CarLinkit has a dual-band wireless transmission, meaning that it gives off two signals – 2.4GHz and 5Ghz, which means it is compatible with more devices.

  • Powering

The CarLinkit and the CPLAY2air connect via Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE). However, the CPLAY2air has a Micro USB port, which can also be connected via USB.

The size of both adapters is similar — they’re around the exact size of a standard USB 3.

They both have an aluminum casing with an LED indicator. The CarLinkit has a USB-C port on the side for charging.

The CPLAY2air is less versatile than the CarLinkit in terms of connectivity ports. It only has one (micro-USB) port. The CarLinkit, on the other hand, has three ports: USB-C, 3.5mm, and Auxiliary.

  • Connection Speed

The CPLAY2air and the CarLinkit both connect quickly. The CarLinkit reaches full connection speed in about 5 seconds from boot-up. The CPLAY2air requires a little longer than that, around 25 seconds.

This is due to the Bluetooth transmission distance. The second factor can be attributed to the wireless adapter’s adaptability.

  • Network Connection

The CarLinkit has an average connection speed of around 50-60%.

The CPLAY2air connects quickly but at a distance of up to 30 feet away. The connection will be weak if your phone is too far away or if you are using an older-generation device.

Both CarLinkit and CPLAY2air can be used with aftermarket head units. It’s still a good option for mobile devices as it’s not limited to just the stock stereo unit in your car.

  • Compatibility

You can still use both devices with Android devices if you have a USB OTG cable or a Bluetooth-enabled Android device and if the phone supports A2DP.

The CarLinkit is compatible with most mobile devices and head units.

It is handy for older models because it comes with a 3.5mm jack, allowing for audio transmission to older cars where newer technology is nonexistent.

The CPLAY2air also works on most mobile devices as long as they support Bluetooth 4.0.

The CarLinkit connects quickly and wirelessly to most car models.

The only major issue is its limited compatibility with Android devices. It can still be used on an Android smartphone, meaning you can use the adapter even if you don’t have a dedicated head unit.

However, it’s only compatible with specific vehicles that support Apple CarPlay, including the Honda Civic and soon-to-be-released Volkswagen Golf Mk7 and Audi A3.

If you’re interested in using your Android smartphone with the CarLinkit, you can purchase an OTG cable and use any USB-only Android phone.

  • Affordability

Both CarLinkit and CPLAY2air are similarly priced. The CarLinkit is more expensive than the CPLAY2air due to its complex design and its inclusion of the USB-C charging port.

If you purchase a CarLinkit, you also get a one-year warranty and technical support. The CPLAY2air only comes with a six-month warranty and support by email.

  • Ease of Use

The CPLAY2air is easier to set up than the CarLinkit. You can connect the adapter to your supported mobile device and a USB port, turn on Bluetooth, and pair it with the CPLAY2air app.

In addition, it supports “device-to-device” pairing, meaning you can connect one smartphone to another without any problem.

With the CarLinkit, you must purchase a separate cable for your car’s stereo system.

Which Wireless Carplay Adapter Is Better?

Both CPLAY2air and CarLinkit are great wireless CarPlay adapters, with their advantages and disadvantages. The only difference between them is the design and power supply.

The CPLAY2air has a clean design that makes it more discreet than the CarLinkit. It is less bulky than the CarLinkit, making it more convenient.

CarPlay2Air Wireless CarPlay Adapter

It also comes with an LED indicator light.

The CPLAY2air has an extra wireless power source and a 3.5mm port that allows you to listen to your music while charging your phone.

However, it lacks a Bluetooth transmitter range and can only be used with a few specific vehicles.

The CarLinkit gives you versatility with its three ports and compatibility with most devices and head units without adding bulkiness to your car dashboard.

Both are incredibly useful and worth investing in.

The CarLinkit is excellent for older vehicles, while the CPLAY2air is suitable for new models. Both are compatible with most smartphones and have great reviews from users.

The CPLAY2air is slightly more expensive than the CarLinkit, but it also comes with a warranty and support by email.

Also Read: Differences Between CarlinKit And OttoCast Carplay Adapters.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Is Carlinkit any good?

The CarLinkit is a little bulky, but its design is the best in the market. Its setup is simple and fast. Also, it has excellent compatibility with most vehicles in the market.

Is Carlinkit 3.0 worth it?

The Carlinkit 3.0 is a slightly better version of the CarLinkit. It includes a USB-C interface, which cuts charging time in half. The USB-C port also allows for data transfer. You can connect your phone to the CarLinkit via USB and sync it without connecting it to a computer.

Does CPLAY2air work with any car?

The CPLAY2air has full compatibility with all car models. It connects quickly and is ready to go in a fraction of the time you’d need to use an adapter. The CPLAY2air offers excellent compatibility, especially with its ability to “remember” up to eight devices.

Is wireless CarPlay worth it?

The wireless CarPlay adapter is a good choice if you want to integrate your mobile device into your car. It reduces the need to use traditional wires and provides ample flexibility to connect with up to eight devices.


The CarLinkit and the CPLAY2air are excellent adapters for connecting your music playback from your phone to your car’s speakers. However, if you’re looking for a simple, affordable way to connect your phone or aftermarket head unit to your car stereo, then the CarLinkit is an excellent choice.

If you’re looking for an alternative compatible with mobile devices and older-generation head units, then the CPLAY2air is also a good option. Other differences between the two CarPlay are discussed in the comparison table above.

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