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Editorial: Assistant is the key to Google's Android Automotive project

Google spent much of the I/O 2017 keynote talking about machine learning. In fact, we heard the phrase "AI first" as a description of Google's current plans. You probably have a little sliver of Google's AI capabilities in your pocket right now—Google Assistant. There's one place in particular Google really wants Assistant to live, and that's in your car.

Voice commands in general are extremely well-suited to the car, so it should come as no surprise that Google had two Assistant-infused "Android Automotive" demos on-hand at I/O—one from Volvo (above) and another from Audi. It's more clear now than ever that Google wants to be the smart interface for your car, and it plans to do it with Assistant.

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Android Auto hits eight more Kia models, with another added to the 'coming soon' list

Kia's doing a decent job equipping its cars with Android Auto support, with popular models like the Soul and Forte already coming with it. Previously, eight Kias were already listed as being Android Auto-compatible. Today, though, the Android Auto site was updated to reflect that eight more Kias now support Google's in-car operating system, with an additional three on the way.

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Android Auto is now on three new 2017+ Mercedes-Benz vehicles

Android Auto is becoming available on an increasing number of vehicles. Even if it's not as cool as the recently-announced 'Android Automotive,' it's still pretty nifty. Premium German marque Mercedes-Benz has just added support for Auto on three of its cars, starting from the 2017 model year.

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Google is building full-on Android for the car with Volvo and Audi

Today Google has revealed more info on its new standalone Android platform for cars. Unlike Android Auto, which just casts info from your phone onto whatever software your vehicle maker has tossed together, the new system is based on Android and brings some of the same tools Android Auto had natively. Google revealed this initiative at last year's I/O, but there hasn't been much news apart from Chrysler's concept back at CES. Both Audi and Volvo will be making use of the new systems in future vehicles.

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[Update: Fixed in Google Maps Beta] Android Auto's Google Maps broken on Audi's 2017 A3s, Google and Audi are on the case

Anyone who might be considering a 2017 Audi A3 on the basis of it using Android Auto might want to reexamine their options. Apparently a large number of the cars are having difficulties with the compass in Android Auto being rotated 180 degrees while the phone is connected, which interferes with navigational operations. Navigation does function correctly when a phone is not connected, though.

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Replying to messages in Android Auto is broken if Hangouts isn't installed, Google is on the case

According to several frustrated posters on Google's product forums, the hands-free reply function built into Android Auto is broken. The feature enables users of various different messaging apps to reply to incoming messages while keeping their hands on the wheel. There is a bizarre workaround, though — make sure you have Hangouts enabled and up-to-date.

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Several 2017 and 2018 Chevy and Vauxhall cars are getting Android Auto

Several car manufacturers have announced their support for Android Auto recently, including Citroën and Peugeot. Chevrolet and Vauxhall are up next, with a large amount of 2017 and 2018 models from both companies receiving Android Auto.

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Peugeot adds Android Auto to 9 vehicles, luxury brand DS to follow

Android Auto is on a roll this month when it comes to manufacturer partnerships. Yesterday we brought news that Citroen had added support for the platform on 6 of its vehicles. Not to be outdone by its fellow French carmaker, Peugeot has also announced compatibility for 9 of its 2017 models. The good news doesn't stop there either, as luxury brand DS is also going to follow suit with 2 of its cars.

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6 Citroën vehicles now support Android Auto, with another on the way

Android Auto has been hitting more and more cars lately, and the most recent recipients are several 2017 Citroën models. If you live in the US and you aren't a car enthusiast, you probably haven't heard of this French automaker, but their cars are pretty popular in regions such as Europe and Asia.

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Invites are going out to the Waze Beta Community to begin testing on Android Auto

Android Auto doesn't boast new features all that often, which is part of the reason many people became excited when a roadmap including some of the most requested improvements was announced at last year's Google I/O event. One particular item, Waze integration, had fans of the navigation app ready to sing. However, the months wore on and news about the pairing dried up. That is until today. Members of the Waze Beta Community have been receiving emails asking if they would like to participate in testing out the new capabilities.

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