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.
It looks like the new Google Play Services rolling out today held one more surprise besides hints of Android Device Manager. With the latest update, Android's Photo Sphere viewer can make use of the on-board compass, allowing you to navigate a sphere just by moving your device, much like Streetview's "Compass Mode."
To enter compass mode, users need only press the arrow icon in the lower left corner of the screen. The icon automatically disappears when you aren't touching the screen, allowing you to look at the sphere uninterrupted.
This is a small enhancement, but one that makes Photo Spheres just that much more awesome.
In yet more app news today, Google pushed out updates to Maps and its cousin Streetview.
First, Google Maps received the promised offline mode, wherein you can pan to a certain area and save it for use without an Internet connection. Pretty neat, though it remains impossible to use navigation offline, limiting the practical applications of this feature.
Additionally, Street View saw a minor update that should improve everyone's favorite compass mode - devices with a gyroscope should now be able to use it more smoothly.
The updates are available now on Google Play, so download away!