The Most Budget-Friendly CarPlay Upgrade! Exploter ApplePie AI-900 RK CarPlay AI Box Adapter Review

In this video, I check out the Exploter ApplePie AI-900 RK an Android 9 AI Box for Apple CarPlay systems. You can buy this Adapter for a very wallet-friendly price of $49.90, directly from its maker’s Store 👉🏻 .

Exploter has come in swinging with their entry-level AI Box adapter for wired Apple CarPlay systems. Costing a mere $49.90, which is almost half the cost of a popular wireless adapter these days, the AI-900 RK opens far more possibilities and entertainment for your CarPlay system.

Featuring a MediaTek MT8163 4-Core 1300MHz CPU and Mali-T720 GPU SOC this AI Box isn’t going to multitask like a New York PA pro, neither is it going to let you play the latest games, but what it will do is allow you to run some fairly simple pre-installed Android apps and more from the Google Play Store on your CarPlay display.

The best use case for this low-cost CarPlay AI Box adapter is not only for Wireless CarPlay and Android Auto, but also for watching streamed video from apps like YouTube and Netflix. Without SIM card slots, you’ll have to tether your phone or connect to a local Wi-Fi hotspot to give an internet connection, but once you do, you’ll bring new life and entertainment to your CarPlay display – perfect for when charging your Electric Vehicle at a charging station.

Its interface is clean and simple, which is a breath of fresh air compared to AI Boxes costing twice as much. Five ‘core’ apps line the bottom of the main home screen, and there’s easy access to the X-Link app for Wireless CarPlay/Android Auto, as well as adapter Settings. You can also create a pull-down gesture from the top to quickly access Wi-Fi and reboot the system.

If you don’t like its default orange background, you can swap it for static and motion wallpapers, or install your own. Unfortunately, the bottom tray on the home screen remains the same orange design, and its music, speed/maps, and clock areas fit the default wallpaper so well that you feel reluctant to change it anyway.

Going back inside apps, going to the home screen and accessing the app switcher is done via a persistent bar at the top of the screen. Much better than a nasty floating button. This bar does say present on most apps, but for apps like CarPlay and whilst watching videos, it does go away and requires a top-down gesture to bring it back in – nice!

The X-Link app is limited in its config options – no change here compared to some others – and it works fairly well for both CarPlay and Android Auto. Sadly theirs no driver-side option, so right-hand drivers will have to live with the side dock always on the left side. Both platforms run at reduced resolution to wired, which is a shame, but again common. Android is a little squashed vertically. Both run OK, not as good as a dedicated wireless adapter, and expect boot speeds to be around average, and a lot longer if you factor in the Android boot-up time. Calling and audio delay don’t carry that much lag as some other AI Boxes do.

Local video, YouTube and Netflix all perform well on this adapter, which is a surprise. The delay in audio is around 200ms on YouTube, less so on Netflix and local media. This is okay for casual watching and can be found a lot worse on more expensive adapters.

Generally, though, all apps will run a little choppy, due to the adapter’s low-end chipset inside and 2GB of RAM, meaning multitasking is out the window, as most background apps will likely restart if they are revisited.

The AI-900 RK is no workhorse, but for casual video watching and if you can be patient with its performance, it will reward you with a vastly cheap way to play lightweight games, watch video on your CarPlay system and also offer wireless CarPlay and Android Auto on top too. For just $49.90, you simply can’t argue with that.


0:00 – Brief overview
0:50 – Unboxing
2:19 – Bootup, Menu UI & Settings
4:12 – Google Maps & Wallpapers
6:10 – DSP & OTA Updates
6:59 – YouTube & Netflix
9:19 – Spotify
10:03 – USB Media
11:39 – Installing Disney+ APK
12:26 – Gaming
13:11 – Wireless CarPlay
15:49 – Wireless Android Auto
17:33 – My Impressions

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