Android Auto will work in any automobile, even an older automobile. All you want is the appropriate equipment—and a smartphone operating Android 5.zero (Lollipop) or greater (Android 6.zero is healthier), with a decent-sized display. Add a couple of helpful apps and telephone settings, and you can also make your smartphone model of Android Auto nearly nearly as good because the dashboard model.
Android Auto wasn’t all the time this simple. When it debuted in 2015, you wanted both a brand new automobile or dear aftermarket to run Google’s infotainment system of the long run. Google introduced a standalone Android Auto app to smartphones the next 12 months, permitting anybody with an Android telephone to make use of the simplified menu system for music, navigation, telephone calls, and messages. Extra just lately, Android Auto added help for Google Assistant and all the identical voice instructions you’d use with a Google House speaker.
Learn on for the easiest way to deliver Android Auto to your automobile. When you’re up and operating, take a look at Google’s Android Auto Help web page for much more info.
Step 1: Get a automobile telephone mount
Utilizing Android Auto in your telephone is sensible provided that you’ll be able to look on the display with out dropping sight of the street. Automotive mounts for this function price round $20, and might connect to your telephone’s dashboard, windshield, CD participant, or air vent. Try PCWorld’s car mount guide for suggestions.
In my case, I used an previous Breffo Spiderpodium Pill (at present $16.95 on Amazon), whose bendable arms match snugly into my Nissan Altima’s air vents. The remaining 4 arms cradle my Pixel 2 XL securely when it’s inserted from above.
Step 2: Add Bluetooth to your automobile
Until your telephone wants charging, you shouldn’t must fiddle with cables each time you get within the automobile. Connecting your automobile to Bluetooth removes the additional little bit of friction that may cease you from listening to music or asking for instructions.
In case your automobile already has Bluetooth built-in, you’re in nice form. Simply pair your telephone by means of the automobile’s infotainment system, and proceed to the subsequent step. In any other case, you’ll want some additional so as to add Bluetooth to your automobile.
For vehicles with an auxiliary three.5mm audio enter, Bluetooth receivers can be found for reasonable. Mpow sells its Bluetooth Receiver (at present $14 on Amazon), although you could need to splurge for the Bluetooth four.1 Receiver ($18 on Amazon), which has a devoted on-off swap. (The cheaper mannequin requires you to press and maintain a button to energy it on, which is barely much less handy.)
These receivers have built-in batteries, however you’re higher off retaining them related to a automobile charger. RAVPower’s tiny dual-USB automobile charger prices simply $8 on Amazon, and it means that you can cost the Bluetooth receiver by way of any micro-USB cable. Use the second slot to cost your telephone on lengthy journeys.
Don’t have auxiliary enter? You’ll be able to nonetheless use a Bluetooth FM transmitter, which grabs audio out of your telephone and creates a short-range broadcast to your automobile radio. The preferred choose on Amazon is the Bluetooth Transmitter from VicTsing ($18 on Amazon), which has a dial for shortly choosing an open radio frequency. The automobile charger additionally has a spare USB slot in case your telephone wants a lift.
Step three: Automate Android Auto
When you’ve bought a Bluetooth answer and paired it to your smartphone, install the Android Auto app from the Google Play Retailer. However don’t cease right here! The actual magic occurs while you create a rule to launch Android Auto when it connects to the automobile by way of Bluetooth.
Launch the Android Auto app, then press the menu button within the top-left nook and choose Settings. Scroll down and choose Autolaunch, then flip on the toggles for Autolaunch and your automobile’s Bluetooth connection. You might also activate pocket detection so the app doesn’t launch prematurely.
To make your telephone really feel a bit extra like an precise infotainment system, you’ll be able to run Android Auto in panorama mode. As a result of I usually maintain my telephone locked in portrait mode, I used a popular $3 app called Tasker to automate the display orientation. Obtain the app, then comply with these steps:
- Below Profiles, press +, then press State, then choose Internet, then choose BT Linked.
- Below Identify, press the magnifying glass, then choose the identify of your automobile’s Bluetooth gadget.
- Below Handle, press the magnifying glass, then select your automobile’s Bluetooth gadget once more.
- Press the again button within the top-left nook, then press New Activity. (Creating a reputation for the duty isn’t obligatory.)
- On the Activity Edit display, press +, then press Show. Subsequent, choose Show AutoRotate, then choose On from the Set menu. Hit the again button within the top-left nook, then press the again button once more on the subsequent display.
Your telephone will now routinely disable rotation lock when it’s related to the automobile. When the connection terminates, it’ll return to portrait-only mode and exit the Android Auto app.
Lastly, you’ll be able to stop the telephone from feeding audio to the automobile at low volumes with the free Bluetooth Volume Control app. After downloading the app, add your automobile’s Bluetooth with the “+” button, and set the amount to 100%.
Step four: Get cozy with Android Auto
Android Auto is basically a particular model of the Android interface, with bigger buttons, simplified menu objects, and fewer distractions. The headphone icon offers fast entry to compatible music apps corresponding to Pandora and Spotify, the navigation icon offers instructions from Google Maps (or Waze, should you’ve put in it), and the telephone button enables you to place calls.
In lots of instances, although, it’s simpler to make use of voice instructions. Hit the microphone icon or say “Hey Google,” then ask for music, instructions, a telephone name, or a textual content message. This works with all Google Assistant actions, so you’ll be able to even dictate to-do checklist objects, add calendar appointments, and switch down the thermostat at residence.
Yet one more factor: To curb distracted driving, Android Auto hides all notifications besides telephone calls and texts from supported messaging apps. For the latter, Google will solely provide to talk the message as an alternative of displaying it onscreen. You’ll be able to then reply by voice or with a canned message, created by means of the Settings menu. (By default, it’s “I’m driving proper now.”)
Once you’re completed driving, Android Auto ought to acknowledge that the Bluetooth connection has terminated and can exit the app routinely. But when not, faucet the circle icon, then press Exit to return to your common telephone interface. Lastly, don’t neglect to take your telephone with you!