Sunday, June 16, 2024

Android Auto

Google enhances the in-car experience with Android Auto

With the increasing time spent in cars, it is essential to make the most of every drive. Recognizing this, Google is introducing new updates for vehicles compatible with Android Auto and cars with Google built-in. These updates aim to provide drivers with seamless navigation, improved connectivity, and entertainment options that can enhance their driving experience both on and off the road. From joining meetings on the go to enjoying popular video apps and staying connected with loved ones, these updates cater to the evolving needs of modern drivers.Access Your Favorite Apps and Join Meetings with Android AutoThe newly redesigned Android Auto is set to be available in nearly 200 million cars by the end of the year. It brings the best features of your phone directly to your car’s display. Drivers can access a vast array of media, messaging, navigation, parking, and charging apps without the need to handle their phones while driving. In an effort to boost productivity, Google is collaborating with partners such as Microsoft Teams, WebEx by Cisco, and Zoom, allowing drivers to join important meetings via audio directly from their car displays. This ensures that drivers can stay connected without compromising their safety.Stay Entertained and Connected with Google Built-InThe number of cars equipped with Google built-in, including renowned brands like Chevrolet, Honda, Polestar, Renault, and Volvo, is expected to nearly double by the end of the year. Google continues to enhance the user experience by catering to two significant driver needs: entertainment and communication. In response to the demand for video content, Google is adding YouTube to the lineup of available video apps. Drivers will soon be able to enjoy YouTube content while waiting for curbside pickups or during breaks. Furthermore, game enthusiasts will be delighted to know that popular titles like Beach Buggy Racing 2, Solitaire FRVR, and My Talking Tom Friends will be accessible through Google built-in, thanks to partnerships with publishers such as Vector Unit, FRVR, and Outfit7 Limited.Drivers can also effortlessly keep up with friends and family on the go. Google Assistant will offer smart suggestions, enabling quick responses to messages and sharing arrival times with a simple tap on the display. This feature will be rolled out to cars with Google built-in over the next few months, ensuring that drivers can stay connected and maintain their focus on the road.Navigate and Find EV Stations with WazeAs electric vehicles (EVs) gain popularity, Google is actively developing specific features for EV drivers. Following the recent introduction of new EV capabilities on Google Maps, Waze is now expanding its presence across Android Auto and cars with Google built-in. Waze provides real-time reports on traffic, road closures, and now, it includes the ability to look up available EV charging stations that match the driver’s EV plug type. The information is sourced from the dedicated Waze Community, a group of volunteers who ensure the accuracy and timeliness of local information.Google’s latest updates for Android Auto and cars with Google built-in aim to revolutionize the driving experience. With enhanced safety features, seamless connectivity, and an array of entertainment options, drivers can make the most of their time on the road. The integration of apps like YouTube and Waze, along with the ability to join meetings via audio, allows drivers to stay entertained, connected, and productive while ensuring their focus remains on the road ahead. As Google continues to collaborate with developers and improve the user experience, the future of driving promises to be even more convenient and engaging.

Android Auto just got a much-requested new feature

Android Auto has finally gotten a long-requested feature that brings another layer of customization to the in-car experience.

This $3 USB adapter fixed all of my Apple CarPlay connection problems

I had lots of issues with CarPlay randomly disconnecting. Then I bought this adapter, and my problem was immediately fixed.

Android Auto update is unveiled at CES 2023 along with improvements to digital car keys and Google built-in for cars

This year at CES 2023, Google launched the new Android Auto experience, and announced expanded digital car key sharing as well as improvements for cars with Google built-in.Android AutoLet’s get started with the refreshed Android Auto that rolled out to users starting on January 5, 2023. This overhaul was first previewed back at Google I/O last year, and it includes improvements to the UI and features to help you while behind the wheel.The three pillars of the latest version of Android Auto are “navigating where you’re going, communicating with friends and family, and playing your music or podcasts.” To that end, Maps is now closer to the driver’s seat to ensure you can keep track of where you are at all times and not miss any important turns. The split-screen layout has also been optimized to be adaptable for different screen sizes, such as widescreen, portrait, and everything in between.Media cards have received a Material You redesign, and Google has finally added one of the most requested features, a seekable progress bar for music and podcasts. Android Auto also features a host of new shortcuts to make it easier to complete tasks on the go.For starters, the quick launcher lets you access your most recently used apps, and there are shortcuts to speed up replying to messages or calling your favorite contacts. Furthermore, Google Assistant will now provide smart suggestions like missed call reminders, arrival time sharing, and instant access to music or podcasts.That’s not all though, Google says that you’ll soon be able to make WhatsApp calls using the latest Pixel and Samsung phones with Android Auto as well.Digital car keysDigital car keys allow you to lock, unlock, and start compatible cars. While you’re already able to share keys across Pixel and iPhones to give access to friends or family, soon you’ll be able to do the same with Samsung and Xiaomi phones later this year.Google built-inWith Google built-in, you get Google Assistant, Google Maps, and apps from the Play Store on your car’s display without the need for a phone. Some cars that already support this are the newly announced Honda Accord Touring 2023, and select cars from Volvo, Chevrolet, GMC, Cadillac, and Renault. Ford and Lincoln are expected to join the club later this year as well.One of the new features now available is Google’s new HD map that gives drivers “precise road details like lane markers, signs and road barriers to support automakers’ assisted and autonomous driving technology for safer, more hands-free driving on select roadways.” HD map is rolling out first to the Volvo EX90 and Polestar 3.The Waze app is also heading to more cars with Google built-in, starting with select Renault vehicles.And finally, some good news for those of you who like to stream videos while parked in your EV. YouTube will soon be joining Tubi and MGM+ via the Google Play Store with more apps expected to come in the future.

Android Auto’s Coolwalk beta redesign rolls out to users

Android for Cars recently released the Coolwalk beta of the new Android Auto UI. This update is now present on the Play Store for anyone who wants to try it.This is good news for old as well as new Android Auto UI users.As clarified by Android Central, Coolwalk was presented by Google earlier this year, with a split-screen UI for Android Auto. The idea was to make the split screen adjust better to various screen sizes.We believe Google has done enough in fine-tuning the experience so that users can enjoy using the Coolwalk beta in a new sense.See Also: Google is bringing updates to Android Auto and to cars with Google built-inNew features of Coolwalk betaThe map is closer to the driver so he or she could easily reach it.Users can change the size of the map. It can fill the entire display so they can have a better chance of viewing their route.The media card has been redesigned so that it can grow and shrink in a dynamic manner as new messages pop in.With just a swipe, users are now able to access Google Assistant recommendations for media.The app dock makes switching between recent apps possible with one tap.Material You design language and modernized UI components and layouts update.The old status icons and notification center bell are now consolidated into one and can be accessed in an easy-to-find area. Now users can easily view the number of unread messages.Better experience with more featuresGoogle has made a big stride by listening to what early testers revealed about the app and this definitely has improved the quality of experience. Since this has been a long-awaited roll-out, users are very enthusiastic about the experience.It appears that Google isn’t done with bringing in more features with the Coolwalk beta. That means as this beta edition is being used auto owners can keep their eyes open for more changes if the need arises.

Google wants you to know Android apps aren’t just for phones anymore

Google has released an update to the Play Store to help Android fans more easily discover and manage apps for smartwatches, smart TVs, and cars.

How to use Waze: Tutorial, tips and tricks

Master the ways of Waze to arrive at your destination swiftly.

What is Waze? Everything you need to know about the popular navigation app

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Wireless Android Auto and Google Maps are a match made in driving hell

Google has a lot to work on when it comes to real-life usage of wireless Android Auto and its own

Can’t connect your phone to Android Auto? You’re definitely not alone.

Scores of users have reported issues with device connections in Android Auto.

Evidence supports that cars should have physical buttons, not just screens

We've all been thinking it, but now there's actually some science to back it up.

15 best Android Auto apps to get the most out of it

Android Auto is one of the best things to happen to cars. Customize your car experience with the best Android

BMW Shipping New Cars Temporarily Without Apple CarPlay

BMW is temporarily shipping new cars without Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionality due to the automaker changing its chip

BMW shipping cars without advertised Apple and Google features

The global chip shortage continues to cause problems for automakers to the point where some are shipping vehicles without all of their advertised features.

Android Auto missing on your phone? Here’s how to get it back

Google has been on a campaign of late to make Android Auto less an app and more of a background process. They announced the demise of the standalone app for phones (and then back off that idea a bit). More recently, they’ve made the app icon for Android Auto for cars hidden in some versions of Android 10.What Do We Want to Happen?Fortunately, there’s a way to bring it back to your launcher if you find it missing. This one’s a little confusing as it’s not visible on our OnePlus 7T but is visible on the Pixel 4 XL. Either way, we want to give you the directions to find the app level settings again for you to be able to edit the options you need when driving with Android Auto.How to Get ThereThe good thing is this is possible even if you don’t have the Android Auto app readily available in your launcher. Follow the steps below to navigate the Android Settings app and locate the needed menus.Open Settings appLocate Apps & notifications and select itTap See all # of appsFind and choose Android Auto from this listClick Advanced at the bottom of the screenChoose the final option of Additional settings in the appCustomize your Android Auto options from this menu 1 of 7 Safe Driving!Success! You should now be in the settings options of your Android Auto experience. From here, you can modify things like using the latest UI options from the older versions. Or maybe you want to stop your audio apps from auto resuming the previous songs you played the last time you were driving (this is my personal favorite).Rumors of even more granular controls are possibly in the works from Google. Some recent code additions seem to point to my biggest peeve of every possible audio app being shown on Auto without the option to shorten this list may soon get a toggle menu to shorten this list.Google has shown a pretty decent dedication to improving Android Auto and you now have full access to it’s sometimes hidden settings.