Carmakers can make aesthetic changes for the software like giving its own custom icon to personalize the system further and Volvo will be the first to natively support it
Android Auto enable the user to mirror phone to the infotainment system and uses functions like calls, sms, navigation, music and more to be used from the system itself which improves the concentration of the driver on road and reduce the use of phone while driving. Google officially previewed second generation of Android Auto at Google I/O 2018 which brings lots of improvements to make it better.
To use Android Auto, we need to connect our phone to infotainment system but with the new version it will be integrated into the system by the manufacturer itself and phone don’t need to be connected. The car makers can make aesthetic changes for the software like giving its own custom icon to personalize the system further. Volvo will be the first manufacturer to natively support this system on their cars.
Even though Android Auto is way more functional than Apple CarPlay, the design of the interface is boring compared to Apple as the animations feel outdated. The first thing Google is going to address is the aesthetics as the home screen will be different for each model with a vibrant look. The infotainment screen is getting bigger and sizes are different on each model, so the Google team is working on how to evolve the UI for better support on these screens.
Usually the input method of Android Auto is either voice or touch along with these Google is looking at integrating touch pad to make it easier. For the first time, Google Playstore support Android Auto and more applications will be taken advantage of this new software as it is upto developers to do it. But some apps like Youtube and other video streaming services won’t support this as it will distract driver.
Google showed one example with Spotify music app as both driver and co-passenger can create a single playlist which can be used while driving and when they open the app on Android Auto, it will be updated with this new playlist (if they have already logged in). The user can also sign in with their Google account to make full use of application features but it is not mandatory.
Google Assistant will play a key role in Android Auto as manufactures like Volvo will put a dedicated Assistant button in the steering wheel. Apart from using it for Android Auto functions, it can be used to control car features like AC and music system also. But all these features will take some time as Volvo will roll out these features only by 2020.