Google has introduced a slew of new features in its latest update for Android Auto and cars with Google built-in, aimed at making your driving and parked experiences more convenient, safe, and entertaining.
Google’s Latest Android Auto Updates Make Driving and Parking More Convenient, Safe, and Entertaining
Productivity on the Go
One of the most notable new features is support for WebEx by Cisco and Zoom, enabling audio-only participation in meetings while you’re on the road. This makes it easy and safe to join scheduled meetings and conference calls directly from your car display, without having to reach for your phone.
This is a major boon for busy professionals who need to stay connected on the go. It’s also a welcome safety feature, as it reduces the risk of distracted driving.
Entertainment While Parked
Google is also expanding its entertainment offerings for cars with Google built-in. Prime Video is now available on Google Play for select Renault, Polestar, and Volvo Cars, with plans to expand to other brands. This means you can now catch up on your favorite TV shows and movies while you’re waiting for your vehicle to charge or for your passengers to finish their errands.
Additionally, Vivaldi, a secure internet browser based on Chromium, is now available on Google Play for in-car browsing. This allows you to browse the web safely and securely while parked, maximizing your time.
Enhanced Driving Experience
Google is also focused on enhancing the driving experience. The Weather Channel app is now available on Google Play for cars with Google built-in, providing real-time weather updates, hourly forecasts, and radar information to keep you informed about weather conditions during your journey.
This is a valuable tool for avoiding traffic delays and road closures caused by bad weather. It can also help you plan your route accordingly, ensuring a safe and comfortable journey.
Digital Car Key
Google is also expanding support for the digital car key, which allows you to unlock, lock, and start your vehicle using your smartphone. This feature is now available for compatible Pixel and Samsung devices on select Hyundai, Genesis, and Kia models in the U.S., Canada, and Korea.
Digital car keys are more convenient and secure than traditional keys, as you don’t have to worry about losing them or having them stolen. You can also share your digital key with family and friends wirelessly, which is ideal for lending your car to someone else.
Google plans to collaborate with more automakers in the near future to expand support for digital car keys.
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Overall, Google’s latest Android Auto updates are a significant step forward for the platform. They make driving and parking more convenient, safe, and entertaining, while also providing valuable tools for enhancing your driving experience.
Examples of how you can use these new features to improve your driving and parked experiences:
- Productivity on the Go: Use WebEx or Zoom to join audio-only meetings while you’re driving, without having to reach for your phone. This is perfect for quick check-ins or brainstorming sessions.
- Entertainment While Parked: Catch up on your favorite TV shows and movies on Prime Video while you’re waiting for your vehicle to charge. Or, browse the web on Vivaldi to stay informed or work on a project.
- Enhanced Driving Experience: Use The Weather Channel app to get real-time weather updates and plan your route accordingly. This can help you avoid traffic delays and road closures caused by bad weather.
- Digital Car Key: Use your smartphone to unlock, lock, and start your vehicle without having to fumble with your keys. This is especially convenient when you’re carrying groceries or other items in your hands.
Google is committed to making Android Auto and cars with Google built-in the best possible driving experience. These latest updates are a testament to that commitment.
Some other ways that you can use these new features to improve your driving and parked experiences:
- Use WebEx or Zoom to join a quick meeting on your way to work or school.
- Listen to a podcast or audiobook on Prime Video while you’re parked waiting for your kids at soccer practice.
- Use The Weather Channel app to check the forecast before you head out on a road trip.
- Give your digital car key to your spouse or roommate so they can use it to get into your vehicle when you’re not around.
These are just a few ideas to get you started. With these new features, the possibilities are endless.