NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- This point got lost in the sea of financial media and popular news stories disguised as regurgitated press releases, but Apple's (AAPL) rebranded attempt to dominate your dashboard will only be as good as Siri.
That's worth repeating: Anything Apple does in the automobile is only as good as Siri. And, right now, Siri's not very good.
I don't care if they call it CarPlay or iOS in the Car or the iteration I test drove last week, Eyes-Free Siri. As I discussed in my review of Eyes-Free Siri, experiencing Siri through your dashboard, as it stands, is no different than experiencing Siri the way you do when it's not connected to a motor vehicle's entertainment system.
The button you push in your car acts as a remote control for the home button on your iPhone (or iPad). From there, you execute standard Siri functions. For CarPlay to be anything beyond mediocre, Apple needs to make drastic improvements to Siri.
Whether Apple's platform powers it (CarPlay) or somebody else's (MyLink from Chevrolet), it all comes down to the quality of Siri.
I'm confident Tim Cook understands this and will act accordingly.
On a related matter, however, I'm not quite as optimistic.
As it stands, Pandora (P) is not integrated with Apple's CarPlay. I confirmed this Monday afternoon with the folks at Pandora. They're taking the high road on the issue, calling Apple "a valued partner" and touting the fantastic job they (Pandora) have done making Pandora part of countless in-dash platforms.