What Is Android Auto, And Is It Better Than Just Using A Phone In Your Car

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Switching to Google Maps always seems like a better alternative than using your car GPS, right? But what if there was an even better way of keeping track of where you are going? Apple, Google, and automobile companies are continuously striving to provide you what your phone does, but built in the dashboard of your vehicle. Even though automobile manufacturers are finding more ways and means to improve their vehicular infotainment system, the famous tech giants somehow manage to come up with something better and intuitive.

Google’s Android Auto and Apple’s CarPlay are classic examples of the progressing vehicle dashboard technology. Let us dive a little deeper into Android Auto. Texting while driving causes up to 1,600,000 accidents per year. The software is primarily focused on making driving safer by minimizing road distractions and helping the driver concentrate better. The standard driving protocol indicates that the hands of the driver should be on the steering wheel and eyes straight on the road.

The idea behind the entire concept is to make the application more user-friendly and simplify the interface. Most car-connect systems nowadays support Android Auto. Moreover, it is compatible with a wide array of smartphones and can run independently without connecting it to a dashboard.

Functions of Android Auto

With easy to read menus and crystal clear icons, Android Auto provides a user-friendly interface. Besides finding the best route, it also detects traffic and offers an alternative to the original course. The powerful navigation systems ensure accurate step by step directions. When you save destinations like ‘home’ and ‘work’ on your phone, it automatically ports them. Motorists can also stay connected to the internet and via phone calls besides keeping themselves entertained during driving.

The system can perform actions with the help of voice commands. You can also reply to text messages, thanks to the impeccable speech-to-text technology. The amalgamation of Android auto with Google Assistant is the biggest hit of 2018. By having the artificial intelligence assistant on-board, drivers can avail the benefits of an intelligent voice command system and enjoy an interactive mode.

Smartphones Compatible With Android Auto

The software works with smartphones having Android 5.0 (Lollipop) version or higher. All you need to do is download the Android Auto app. After downloading the app, connect your phone to your car’s dashboard with the help of a USB cable.

Cars Offering Android Auto

The Mercedes-Benz lineup along with various Volvo, Chevrolet, Honda, Kia, and Volkswagen models are compatible with Android Auto. You can check out the full list on Android Auto’s official website. Toyota is an exception which continues to decline Apple’s CarPlay as well as Google’s Android Auto keeping in mind some safety and privacy concerns. The same goes for Porsche and BMW.

How To Bypass Issues With Compatibility

If you are on the lookout for Auto-compatible head units, you can turn to manufacturers such as Kenwood, Pioneer, Panasonic, and Sony. A feasible solution to compatibility issues is to download Android Auto and use it as a standalone application. Regardless of whether the display in on the dashboard of a car or the screen of a smartphone, once you mount it, the features offered are the same.

Which Apps Are Compatible With Android Auto?

The navigation system of Google along with search functions and 40 different apps are compatible with Android Auto, TuneIn, Skype, Waze, Amazon Music, iHeartRadio, Spotify, and Stitcher, to name a few.

Google Assistant And Voice Commands With Android Auto

Just by pushing the voice button on their cars, the drivers can ask whatever they want as they do on their phones. Play your favorite songs, reply to messages, dial a number, ask for directions to various destinations, etc. although you can only use voice commands on apps that are compatible with Android Auto.

Although you cannot control the AM/FM of your car with voice commands, the cellular data connection of the phone plays a vital role in the proper functioning of the features. If the network is compromised, so will be the features of the software. You can have the weather reports at your constant beck and call from anywhere around the world. Android Auto doesn’t have Google Assistant to coordinate the services of a smart home.

Can You Add Android Auto To Your Already Existing Vehicle?

Some of the Hyundai 2016 models including the Sonata and Mazda models can be upgraded to make the software work smoothly. Although in general, it is not possible to make older vehicles support Android Auto.

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