Over the past year or so, Android Auto been stuck in neutral. Even by removing the car requirement making Android Auto a stalone app, the initiative hasn’t really picked up speed. ’re still waiting for most of our favorite apps to join the fray (including ze, which was promised at last year’s I/O), for the most part, Android Auto hasn’t really advanced beyond its initial concept.
However, a new partnership with Audi Volvo aims to kick it into high gear. According to a blog post, is taking Android Auto out of our phones putting it directly into our cars with a full-on Android dashboard. first got a pie-in-the-sky peek at an Android-powered Maserati at I/O last year, but now is serious about delivering on its vision.
oject manager Haris Ramic says the new system will work with familiar apps like Maps, Spotify, N, but also “could allow you to control your air conditioning, sunroof, windows.” Additionally, the new system will integrate with Assistant, much like Apple has teamed with Toyota other manufacturers with Siri Eyes Free. has previously announced that it will be adding Assistant to Android Auto.
Bloomberg News adds some more context, saying that drivers will not need to plug in an Android phone to access any of the system’s features, car makers will have the ability to customize the controls, interface, applications pre-loaded into the operating system, just like phone makers do.
The version of the software that Bloomberg saw had “three main windows for users: a central panel for playing music, making calls navigating; another with a grid of core car functions; a third that lists installed Android apps. A button on the steering wheel a voice comm can activate the Assistant.”
said it will be previewing the new Volvo Audi Android Auto systems at I/O this week.
The road ahead: This is the logical next step for Android Auto. ile the current app-centric method is fine, a system on top of a system isn’t the most elegant solution, it limits what can do to enhance it—after all, we’re still waiting for wireless support, ze, Assistant. can’t wait to get a look at the new car integrations at I/O, hope has many more partnerships to announce in the months ahead.