Developed by Google, Android Auto is an Android mobile application that can be downloaded from the Google play store and then installed on a smartphone. The Android Auto app is connected to the car display and is used as a simplified version of Google, i.e., it can make calls, play music stored on our phone, use Google Maps, and send direct messages to contacts via USB. However, our phone interface appears on the car’s dashboard screen, i.e., the notifications other than the incoming calls and the messages are completely hidden away in the background. The ping of a new WhatsApp message is also available only when the phone is disconnected.
|25th June 2014||Google I/O debuted Android Auto.|
|19th March 2015||Google released Android Auth.|
|November 2016||Google added an option to run Android Auto on a regular Android device.|
|July 2019||Android Auto received its first major UI to rework with other changes.
Google announced that the apps used on the phone would be discontinued in favor of Google Assistant’s drive mode.
Android Auto app is available in more than 36 countries, since May 2019, however, the availability of apps on the system varies.
What does Android Auto do?
The information is displayed on a familiar, and easy-to-use interface with swipe out of the way, legible menus, and large icons, by Android Auto. The Google Maps navigation system is an important part of it that provides step-by-step directions. It also helps to find an alternate route if it detects heavy traffic. We can also use our voice commands for purposes like to reply to the message using speech-to-text technology. Even if the car is not equipped with voice recognition technology, and the Android Auto’s features are accessible using the touchscreen in the car, the speech-to-text technology still works.
To display the traffic route to the destination with the utmost accuracy, Android Auto app makes use of the GPS. Along with this, the Android Auto app also suggests the place where we may want to go next. The better route options are also suggested according to the latest traffic information.
With Google Dialer, safety calls are provided by Android Auto. Recent calls listed on our phone are included in the Android Auto menus and to reach someone outside the frequent contacts, we can touch ‘Dial a number’. More options for voicemail, speed dial, and missed calls, are provided by a ‘hamburger button’ present in the phone app in the top left.
Similar to an Android phone, the incoming messages are displayed as a notification at the top of the screen, by the Android Auto app. To read a message, we can tap on the notification and to dismiss it we can tap X. To dictate our response, we can tap the microphone icon and say ‘Reply’.
Which phones are compatible with Android Auto?
All the Android smartphones, with 5.0 (Lollipop) or higher versions support the Android Auto app. We just need to download the free Android Auto app. And to use it we need to connect our phone with a car display using a USB cable.