Cars and smartphones: Google wants to make Android Auto more useful

Android Auto receives new functions to make the use of the smartphone in connection with an entertainment system in the car more pleasant. Android Auto is included in many modern car radios and entertainment car systems and enables the smartphone to be connected to it. With most manufacturers this is only possible via a cable connection, but there are also some that allow a wireless connection.

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The new version of Android Auto has a full calendar app again. With an update distributed in summer 2019, the calendar app was removed from Android Auto. Since then, it has only been possible to have appointments announced via the Google Assistant. It was no longer possible to show appointments on the display.

This restriction is lifted again; upcoming appointments can be shown on the display via Android Auto. Short commands are displayed for individual appointments in order to be driven to the stored address or to be able to call the relevant contact directly.

Easier access to Android Auto settings

Finally, with the upcoming version of Android Auto, it will be possible to adjust the settings for the system directly on the entertainment system’s screen. So far, this was only possible in the Android car app. If something should be changed in the Android auto settings, the smartphone had to be used first instead of being able to make the changes directly on the entertainment system’s display.

Support for third-party navigation apps

Furthermore, Android Auto should be better able to be used with navigation apps from other providers. So far, Google Maps and Waze are supported. In the future, it should also be possible to use the Tomtom, Sygic or Map Factor apps. It will take some time before that happens. Google announcedthat by the end of the year this function will only be available for beta tests of the relevant apps. Only then will the opportunity be made available to the general public.

The same limitation applies to apps for finding parking spaces and finding charging points for electric vehicles. Again, more third-party apps are supported, but it is still a while before this will be available to everyone. Initially, a beta test will start by the end of the year.

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