Android Police

Android Auto

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Android Auto is getting a ground-up redesign this summer

Google released Android Auto more than four years ago, and what we have today looks and works almost the same. That will change this summer, though. Google has just announced a massive redesign for Android Auto that makes it easier to manage notifications, access apps, and control media.

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Android Auto support arrives for Hyundai Palisade, Genesis G70 and G90, and a couple of Kias

Hyundai was the first automaker to adopt Android Auto with its Sonata back in 2015. Since then, the tech has made its way to virtually every new car (except BMW's, because reasons). The Android Auto support site has just been updated with several cars from Hyundai/Kia, including the Palisade crossover and the G70 and G90 sedans.

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My first look at Google's all-new Android Automotive on the Polestar 2 was very promising

Android Automotive as a platform has, technically, existed for years. The problem is that, compared to a smartphone, it takes a long time to design and build a car, so Google's had to wait those years to give the system a proper introduction. After spending some time seeing it demonstrated in the upcoming Polestar 2 (an all-electric vehicle), I think the wait was worth it: this looks legit.

For ages, we've all said the same thing: "All I want is Google Maps on my car's infotainment screen." Android Auto delivered on some of that promise, but the projected app is subject to performance glitches, wonky voice functionality, and can feel like a square peg in a round hole solution for vehicles that clearly weren't designed with touch-first interfaces in mind.

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Google's rolling out the red carpet for Android Automotive developers at I/O

There are a lot of things a software platform needs to succeed, and developer interest is one of the most integral pieces of the puzzle. To help Google's plans for Android Automotive — which brings a full Android OS to cars — the company is gearing up to help interested developers get started at this year's I/O conference.

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InBrief
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The 2020 Toyota Highlander comes with Android Auto standard

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Android Auto update brings half-baked support for Google Voice messages

Android Auto is designed with simplicity and safety in mind. As such, it will not show all your notifications while you drive, but only the most important ones like navigation, weather, calls, and messages. However, the latter can only be played vocally and are limited to a few apps such as SMS, WhatsApp, and Hangouts. Until now, Google Voice wasn't supported in Android Auto, which meant incoming texts wouldn't appear on your car's screen. The company is finally fixing this thanks to an update that notifies you when receiving Google Voice messages.

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Android Auto v4.1 adds widescreen support and UI tweaks, prepares auto-resume, and more [APK Teardown]

Android Auto continues to work toward adding features people really need in the car. The latest update brings a few minor surface-level changes, and under the hood there are some new features that may be pretty useful, including an auto-resume feature for music (or podcasts and audiobooks), a filter to prevent group messages from becoming too distracting, and more.

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Samsung's One UI night mode forces Android Auto to think it's always nighttime

With One UI, Samsung introduced a system-wide night mode for its Android Pie devices. The new feature darkens the manufacturer's proprietary software such as the Calculator and Messages apps and also alters the overall menus and interface colors, but still requires you to manually enable dark mode in other applications like Messenger or Slack. Android Auto, on the other hand, happily receives this setting and defaults to it, no matter the time of the day.

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The electric Volvo Polestar 2 is official, making it the first car with Android Automotive on board

Volvo has just taken the wraps off of the Polestar 2, an all-electric sedan-crossover thing intended to go head-to-head with the Tesla Model 3. The affordable electric car aspect isn't the only talking point of this; it's also the first vehicle with Google's deeply-integrated Android Automotive infotainment system.

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Toyota is finally adding Android Auto support, starting with its trucks and SUVs

Yes, it's finally happening — Toyota is putting Android Auto in its vehicles. For the longest time, it was one of the two major holdouts (we're still looking at you, BMW), but the Japanese car manufacturer announced today at the Chicago Auto Show that Android Auto is coming, starting with six models.

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