Android Auto is a lot better than most stock operating systems from car manufacturers, but by no means perfect. There is still a lot of room for improvement. This is our wish list for Android Auto.
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Wish list for Android Auto: 5 new functions
Google and Apple are not only competitors in the smartphone field. The two superpowers also compete for first place behind the wheel. Android Auto will finally officially come to the Netherlands soon and let’s hope that Google will improve the platform considerably in the coming years. In this article, we share our Android Auto wish list: hopefully these things will be picked up by Google in the coming years.
1. More stable
The first item on our list is not so much a wish, but mainly an appeal. Android Auto does not work flawlessly for everyone. From problems with the pronunciation of WhatsApp messages, an unresponsive Google Assistant, apps that do not work (properly) to even not even getting the system to work: the laundry list of problems with Android Auto goes far.
The main wish is therefore to provide stability. Hopefully, the platform for the road will grow in the coming years into a reliable and solid operating system that works well in almost any situation. At the moment it differs per car and phone how (not) well Android Auto functions.
Making an operating system more stable is of course easier said than done, because just as there are thousands of Android phones, you can choose from an endless number of cars. It is a gigantic task to make a program workable on all these cars. However, if one company can do this, it is Google.
→ Also read: Downloading Android Auto and using it in your car: that’s how you do it
2. More apps
The Android Auto app range is currently limited. You can choose from some navigation, communication and music apps, but there are not many options. For example, are you bothered by the WhatsApp bug where messages are read in English? Then the only serious alternative is Telegram, a chat app that has far fewer users.
In the same way, besides Google Maps, Sygic and Waze (and soon Flitsmeister), you have little choice in terms of navigation apps. This lack of supply is partly due to the extra strict security measures. After all, Android Auto is a platform for on the go, so it shouldn’t be too distracting.
We do hope that the app range will expand in the coming years. For example, it would be great if Netflix released an app for Android Auto. That way, co-drivers can watch their favorite series during a long drive.
3. Control panel to the left
With Android Auto, the control bar – with buttons to, for example, pause and resume music – is at the bottom. This bar is placed on the left side of the major competitor Apple CarPlay. Tastes differ, of course, but in our opinion this is a more logical place for a system that you use behind the wheel.
By moving the most important controls to the left side of the dashboard screen, you don’t have to reach as far with your hand to go to the home screen, for example, or to start a new app.
→ Also interesting: Apple CarPlay, or Android Auto? 5 differences between the rivals on the go
4. Richer widgets
Android Auto could also take a look at the way CarPlay organizes the home screen. In our opinion, this platform makes smart use of widgets, or ‘expanded’ apps.
With the CarPlay Dashboard (which is in fact an extra screen next to the home screen) you can see your route, expected arrival time, music player and upcoming appointments at a glance.
With Android Auto, the widgets are still much more limited. If you use another app, such as Spotify, while navigating, you will only see which next turn you should take at the bottom of the navigation bar.
5. Information about your car
Furthermore, it would be great if Android Auto would work more closely with your car. It is purely hypothetical, but it would be nice, for example, if you could go to an overview page with relevant statistics about your car via the platform. This page shows, for example, how your tire pressure is and how many kilometers you can still drive before your tank is empty.
Speaking of which: the integration with Android Auto could be extended even further. For example, it is by no means a certainty that you can also use the control buttons on the steering wheel of your car for Android Auto. As a result, you still often have to use the touchscreen, while you probably have a lot of control buttons that you do nothing with. It would be nice if you could use it to control Android Auto.
Monthly Theme: Android Auto
The whole month of February stands Android Planet all about Android Auto. We take a look at how the platform is doing in 2021 in the updated review, list the best apps for Android Auto and look with an eye to Android Automotive, a stand-alone operating system for electric cars. Click on the links below to read previously published articles about Android Auto.
Which functions are you still missing in Android Auto? Leave your thoughts in the comments!