Android Auto: Key features, what it can do, what not and more – Times of India
Having said that, don’t make the mistake of believing that Android Auto will make your car smart. Android Auto is Google’s way of providing things that you like to do on your Android smartphone while driving on the dashboard of your vehicle.
Using Android Auto you can use Google Assistant, Google Maps to navigate, play music, make calls handsfree and more. It just ensures that you don’t need to touch your phone while driving by offering a parallel Android experience on your infotainment screen. That’s just it. So, don’t be under the impression that Android Auto will start opening doors for you or offer reverse parking, climate control or any other core software features of the car.
Key things Android Auto allows you to do in your car hands-free
You can Google Assistant on Android Auto to get tasks done
The entire focus of Android Auto is not to make you touch your phone while driving. You can use Google Assistant to change music, start Google Maps navigation, make calls, reply to texts, etc. In fact, almost all tasks that you do on your Android smartphone using Google Assistant can be done by just speaking to your car’s infotainment system. But if you are someone who still doesn’t use Google Assistant on your phone, then you may wonder why pay extra for a higher variant of the same car when you are really not interested in talking to the car. But thanks to Android Auto, you at least have an option.
Navigation through Google Maps becomes easy
Without Android Auto, you need to connect your Android phone to the car’s infotainment system to hear Google Maps navigation updates and keep fidgeting around the tiny screen of your smartphone to see routes. With Android Auto, you don’t need to hold your phone or attach it to the windshield to see routes or other navigation details while driving. You can get all the updates on the bigger infotainment touchscreen. That’s considering your car has a big infotainment touchscreen in the first place.
Make calls, change music, chat with voice
Like already mentioned, you can make calls by just saying “Ok Google” or can make your car read texts and even reply to them and of course change music. It goes without saying the apps that you use must support Google Assistant. Thankfully, all popular chat and music streaming apps have got Google Assistant support. You can also hear news and also access the calendar to stay updated with daily routines.
Talking about privacy, make sure that you are with close people or alone while taking personal calls or attending to something crucial, unless you don’t want all passengers inside to hear about what’s going on in your life.
Android Auto connectivity: What you need to know to make it work
To use Android Auto, you will need to use an USB cable to connect your phone to your car’s infotainment system. With USB connection, all Android Auto compatible infotainment systems sync easily with your phone. You would need a smartphone with Android 6 or higher and need to download the Android Auto app first. Also, ensure that you use a high-quality USB cable. Of course, you need a data plan. If your mobile data is slow or if you have run out of data then Android Auto is dead too.
There’s a wireless version of Android Auto as well but it is limited to certain car models and smartphones. This means, your mobile is required to be connected to the infotainment system with the USB cable throughout the journey. This may lead to your phone getting heated up or may impact the battery life (due to overcharging) in the long run. It is always advisable to opt for wireless Android Auto, simply because it’s more convenient.
As for the wireless version of Android Auto, ask your car dealer and also verify the same by visiting the official Android Auto website. Google has enlisted all supported cars, smartphones and stereo systems that offer Android Auto wireless.