Smartphone integration and in-dash vehicle electronics are getting ever closer to one another. With things like Siri Eyes Free and CarPlay coming to the market, folks are able to stay connected while still keeping their eyes on the road. But what about our Google-using friends? The internet and mobile device company has been working on Android’s answer to Apple; and here it is.

Android Auto basically uses your vehicle’s in-dash infotainment screen as a simplified display and input for your smartphone. Users connect their Android devices to the car via the charging cable and the phone enters Car Mode, rendering the car’s touchscreen as the phone’s primary screen.

This particular video is more targeted toward developers and how their applications will be displayed in the new mode. Things like voice control, music play-back, and even stored preferences all translate to the car’s screen.

What’s more, because all the user’s information is stored on the phone, the Android Car Mode displays the same, no matter what car the user happens to be in. For the demonstration, Timothy Jordan uses a Kia Soul. Like the growing list for Apple’s CarPlay, the list of manufacturers adopting Android abilities is growing. It includes Bentley, FCA, Nissan, Mazda, Mitsubishi, General Motors, Volkswagen, Volvo, Hyundai, Kia, and Honda — along with any sub-brands beneath each moniker.

Smartphone and car integration technology like this makes us excited. Not only is it a great bridge between two loved devices, but also it should help reduce driver distraction. That’s a win-win situation.


Mark McNabb
Mark McNabb was a contributor at TopSpeed from 2013 to 2018. Growing up, Mark always had a mind for tinkering on random items throughout his home and dad’s garage, including a 1953 Ford Mainline and 1971 Corvette Stingray.  Read More
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