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Can You Add Android Auto to a Car?

A driver seat with android auto.

Technology today is changing rapidly. Some cell phone users change smartphones every 1 or 2 years to benefit from the latest developments.

This represents a cost… but some things can be more complicated to renew. I am talking here about cars and on-board technologies, which could follow the evolution of smartphones.

Years ago, it was the jack to connect the phone to the car. The objective was to listen to music… not very practical to change music, because there was no control near the steering wheel.

Then, the cars had Bluetooth (wireless connection, control with the controls on the steering wheel, a minimum of music information on the screen). Today, there is a complete graphical interface that drivers can have on the screen of the car.

There are the manufacturer’s proprietary systems, as well as Apple Carplay (wired or wireless) and Android Auto (wired required).

Why Am I Talking to You About This Today?

A year ago, I upgraded from an iPhone SE to an iPhone SE 2020. With this new smartphone, I encountered audio quality issues with Bluetooth on my car. Dropping for a few seconds while listening to music on Spotify and choppy phone calls.

I tried several things, but without success. It remained only to update the car. Here, I ruled out this step, because I believe everything should be in concession and the result was uncertain.

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After a few months, I started researching to find an alternative solution. I discovered a box that allowed me to benefit from Apple, Car Play or Android Auto on my car.

What is Android Auto?

A android auto screen on car.

Android Auto is a Google application that reflects a good part of the applications installed on the smartphone on the car ‘s infotainment screen.

The idea is that, while driving, the apps can be used to play music or do anything else you would like without taking your eyes off the road and with your hands on the wheel (with the voice assistant, just say “OK, Google” to accept and execute simple commands).

How Do You Install Android Auto?

Downloading android auto on cellphone.

Installing Android Auto in the car is very simple. Follow the three steps below.

Google makes it really easy to check whether or not the car is compatible with this tool. All I did was to access this web page and search for my car within the entire list that the American company makes available. In addition, it will provide the year of the vehicle and the exact model.

In the case of my mobile device, it would have been difficult for it not to be compatible. To do this, I had to use my Android 6.0.

In addition to that, I had to have an Internet connection. Therefore, most smartphones with the Google operating system will be able to use this software. And how is it logical, Apple mobiles will not be able to count on this possibility.

How To Download and Install It

Downloading android auto on cellphone.

The second step will be to download and install the Android Auto application on the mobile device. To do this, users have to go to Google Play and search for the app in question.

  • Check that the mobile and the car meet the requirements. Almost all mobile phones (except Apple) and a good part of cars on the road support the installation of Android Auto. Even so, the first thing is to make sure that the phone meets the minimum necessary requirements.
  • The phone must support Android 6.0 or later. It is also essential that you have an active Internet connection (either a data plan or WiFi connection).
  • The car must also be compatible with Android Auto. Google provides the complete list of models compatible with this application.
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Android Auto Multimedia System

A multimedia system on car screen.

Now it is time to download the app from Google Play. After checking the compatibility of the phone and the vehicle, the next step is to download the Android Auto app.

It is available on the Google Play store. With an Android 10 operating system or a later version installed, the user can skip this step since it will be installed by default.

Start Using Android Auto

A driver using android auto on car.

For compatible apps to mirror the car’s dashboard screen, the user will need a high-quality USB cable. Look for one compatible with the make and model of the car, although there are compatible with several models.

Android Auto is a very intuitive application that indicates the steps to follow to achieve a total connection. The recommendation, in order to enjoy all its functions, is to accept all the permissions it requests.

Another option is to use the application via a wireless connection. The list of compatible vehicles is somewhat smaller. Although the biggest restriction to this connectivity is that the mobile terminal is compatible with wireless Android Auto, for which they must also have Android Auto version 4.7 or higher.

Conclusion

To connect Android Auto in remote mode, users will need to have Bluetooth and WiFi on their mobile active to be able to link their smartphone and car. All updates and permissions that appear on the screen should be accepted.