BMW was one of the last automakers to add Android Auto to its vehicles, and owners with compatible cars still have to go to the dealer to get the update. That's changing soon, though; BMW has just announced that an over-the-air update will start rolling out "over the coming weeks."
While compatibility with wireless Android Auto is expanding on phones, there are still many in-car head units and media players that are stuck using tethered connections. That's where a device called 'AAWireless' comes in, which aims to add wireless support to as many Android Auto units as possible.
Android Auto has traditionally required connecting your phone to a car with a USB cable, but a wireless mode was introduced in 2018 for some Pixel phones. Samsung devices were later added to the compatibility list, and starting with Android 11, every Android phone that supports 5GHz Wi-Fi should be capable of running wireless Android Auto.
Some cars and head units are capable of displaying Android Auto from your phone wirelessly, but there are additional restrictions to the functionality — other than owning a compatible handset, you also need to live in one of the regions where the wireless connection is available. Luckily, the list of supported countries is expanding, and now you can use wireless Android Auto in almost all locations where the wired version is available, with only two exceptions: Japan and Russia.
We knew it was coming but it's now official: JVCKENWOOD has debuted 7 new car head units under its JVC and Kenwood brands with support for Wireless Android Auto. This means no more fussing with the USB cable and plugging your phone in every time you get in the car: the Auto interface will work wirelessly. This will be great for short trips, but you're still better off charging your phone during long drives, especially if you're using GPS for navigation, lest the battery die prematurely.
Android Auto makes the in-car experience a lot nicer (at least when it's not bugging out), but it's tedious to have to plug your phone in every time you get in the car just to use it. We've been hoping for a wireless solution for some time now, and it seems like it's finally becoming a reality. JVCKENWOOD will have two receivers capable of wireless Android Auto on display at CES 2018.