Why Android Auto features?
Using smartphones while driving for communication, entertainment, even for navigation distracts you and may even lead to major accidents. Therefore Apple & Google introduced Apple CarPlay and Android Auto features in which you can access your phone on the car’s inbuilt infotainment system. But what differentiates it from your Android phone? What features does it bring you? Here is what you should know.
Android auto boasts about more than 400 car models being compatible with it. It has got a similar shape to Apple CarPlay with a bit of android phone’s functionality. You may message, listen to a song or even get directions to a place from where you are by just dictating to your phone what you want.
Android compatible cars come with compatible knobs and voice controls. So that you don’t have to gaze at your phone and keep your hand busy with it. For example, if you want to start navigation, press and hold the voice controls on the steering wheel or you may simply say “OK Google”
We all know that Android Auto is from Google. So it has Google Maps on it which has a huge database of locations compared to Apple maps and it further gives you the fastest route as well as the real time traffic alerts. What is important to note is that Android Auto is not limited only to Google maps, it has also given you a chance for you to have a third party map like Waze which is popular these days.
You can command Google Assistant to dial a contact in your phone book on your behalf. And the conversation will happen through your car’s speakers. Therefore the calling experience in your car is smarter with Android Auto as it does not distract you from focusing on the road.
Android Auto takes the course of reading, replying and composing texts for you. All you need to do is, just dictate and say the message you want to be typed or read.
This can be used either by bluetooth or via a lightning cable plugged into the infotainment system. But most of the car’s for now are not supported in an untethered way. You don’t need to type or either pick your phone with your hands to send a message, as you can easily command it to the Google Assistant.
1. Voice control availability with Google Assistant
As mentioned before, Google Assistant will help you to make a phone call, send a message, or read out the weather forecast with Voice Control. This has become a convenient way of communication while driving as texting or calling with your mobile while driving is dangerous. You can keep your focus on the road while Google Assistant does everything according to your commands. You can activate it by saying “Hey Google”, or else tap the microphone button at the head unit.
2. Monitoring smart home gadgets
If you have smart home gadgets that automate and monitor your home, Android Auto can integrate with that. You could use Google Assistant with Android Auto to check and control your smart home devices while you are driving. However, you have to install smart home devices that are compatible with Google Assistant to get the most of this.
Even with a smart garage door controller that supports Google Assistant, you could open your garage door remotely from your car without anyone else's help.
3. On- Screen weather updates
If you have turned on the weather option, Android Auto can show you the latest weather updates on screen. Or else, just ask “ how is the weather” from the Google Assistant.
4. Big icons for easy touch
It's easy for you to touch the screen while driving because it displays bigger icons. Easy focus and easy touching.
5. Turn to turn navigation
Android Auto is compatible with easy navigation while you are using it. So, you do not need to worry about the road, your map will guide you with turn to turn. Most navigation apps like Google Maps, Samsung Maps, and Waze are compatible with this.
6. Realtime phone calls and updates
If your signal strengths are strong while you are on the road, you don’t need to worry about your calls and messages, as they deliver in real-time.
7. Music and audio playback
Music while driving is something to wake you up, as you may feel bored if you drive alone.Android Auto supports a variety of music-playing apps including Spotify and YouTube Music and even you can listen to podcasts while driving.
8. Ability to customize the app menu
Most importantly, Android Auto provides their users, the ability to customize their app menu. You can even add more apps to Android Auto by referring Android Auto-compatible apps on Google Playstore.
These features are really helpful for the drivers for their safety. Because they do not have to touch the phone or look at the phone while driving and on the other hand they do not miss their real-time updates on the phone.
Google usually do not let their users install video streaming apps like YouTube, Netflix or Hulu on Android Auto as you can be distracted by these video streaming. However, if you wish to add any app to Android Auto, which is not allowed by Google by default you can simply install the WheelPal app, which can help you to add any app on Android Auto.
If you do not have Android Auto, yet you can experience the Android Auto experience with the InCar Android Auto simulator app.
Also, there are some Android Auto hacks to customize the compatible app list and enhance the existing features. Read everything about Android Auto, news, hacks, tips and many more on carplayhacks blog.