Complete guide to Android Auto: this is how it works

Android Auto has become one of the most used car navigation platforms, today we bring you the complete Android Auto guide which has a lot to offer in our car.

Driving is an almost routine habit for some, therefore, we may be interested in learning about Android Auto. It is one of the most used platforms, although you may not know everything that this app offers, either because the car we have is not compatible or because we do not know everything we can do through Android Auto.

Before starting to see the different functions that Android Auto has, we must know that if we have a car compatible with Android Auto and our smartphone has Android 10 , we will not have to download any type of application.

Web: Cars compatible with Android Auto

This is because with the arrival of Android 10, when making a wired or wireless connection, when our device detects that our car is compatible with Android Auto, it will start automatically.

Even so, if we have Android 10 and we do not have a car compatible with Android Auto, we can download the app from the Play Store called “ Android Auto for phone screens”. When starting it, we must grant it a series of permissions to have access to recent calls, the weather, browsers …

The Android Auto interface, a great ally

Android Auto is a very useful application especially due to the interface it offers, which is simple and intuitive but without neglecting the integration of some functions such as the Google assistant, shortcuts to calls, music or browsers.

When we open Android Auto, we find four buttons at the bottom:

  • Round icon : Through it we can exit the Android Auto application.
  • Indications icon : When we press it, they will give us to choose which browser we want to use if there is more than one available on our device, when we select one, it will be predefined so that when we press it opens it directly.
  • Telephone : We will access recent calls and by clicking on any of them the call will be made.
  • Headphones : As we can imagine, by pressing this icon we will select one of the music services that we have on our device. As with the indications icon, when you click on one of them, it remains by default so that we have to touch the mobile as little as possible when we are driving.

In the upper part, we will be shown different notifications, which we can see in a big way and recall by clicking on it. Android Auto has its own interface for calls in such a way that when we make the call, the phone is automatically put on speaker.

As far as messaging applications are concerned, we can answer through the voice using Google Assistant, silence the notification or even respond with “I’m driving” that appears by default in Android Auto.

At the top right, in the form of a microphone icon, is the Google assistant, which we can wake up through “OK Google” or by clicking on the button.

As we can see, it is an application designed to be viewed from afar , with a simple and uncomplicated interface so that if we are driving we are distracted as little as possible, although it is never recommended to use this type of service when we are driving.

It is also very easy to know some information about what connections we have active such as WiFi or Bluetooth.

Applications, a fundamental part of Android Auto

Whether we have a car compatible with Android Auto as well as not, making use of several applications without having to leave the Android Auto application is undoubtedly one of the most notable advantages that the service has.

These applications, which are almost essential for Android Auto, can be downloaded by performing the following steps:

  • We open Android Auto.
  • We click on the three bars located in the upper left part.
  • We will enter the “Applications for Android Auto” section.
  • This same process can be done directly through the “Play Store” although sometimes it is somewhat more confusing.

The catalog that Android Auto has is really extensive , although we must comment that they are applications which are compatible with the system, but without having to download an application for Android Auto and another to be able to use it on our mobile, but if we already have a compatible app, it is compatible with Android Auto.

It is true that despite having many applications, most of them belong to a few categories such as navigation, audiobooks or podcasts, messaging apps, music streaming services …

These apps are introduced within the Android Auto framework, so we will always have access to the buttons located at the bottom. To open an app with Android Auto we will carry out the following steps:

When we exit Android Auto, a notification persists in the notification bar that shows the ” exit ” button . We will not press said button and while this notification is active it means that we are inside Android Auto.

  • We will exit Android Auto.
  • We make sure that the Android Auto notification is still active.
  • We open an app compatible with Android Auto and then the different Android Auto shortcut buttons will be shown at the bottom.

Screen on or off?

Android Auto is fully customizable at the level of settings, so if we want the screen to be on constantly as is usual and thus view the screen content at any time, or only when charging our smartphone.

Another option is that Android Auto obey the settings of the phone in which after a defined time in the settings of our mobile the screen turns off.

In order to make these changes we will follow the following steps:

  • We open Android Auto.
  • Click on the upper left.
  • We select “Settings”.
  • In the section “Phone screen settings”.
  • We select the option “Screen always on” in which we will be given the three options discussed above.

Notifications, cause of many distractions behind the wheel

We must be very cautious with the configuration of the notifications in Android Auto, since they can cause us distractions that can end in disaster. So that this does not happen, we can configure the notifications of the applications that we decide, as well as customize the quick response that by default is “I’m driving”.

Most of us use a lot of applications in our day to day and it is likely that as soon as our mobile vibrates we will quickly go to it to find out what the reason for the vibration has been or to consult them through our smart watch.

So that notifications are not a danger behind the wheel, we can manage them and allow those that we consider to be most important to appear in Android Auto To do this, we will follow the following steps:

  • We open Android Auto.
  • Click on the upper left.
  • We select “Settings”.
  • We will go down to the “Notifications” section.
  • In the first section, we can change the predefined text, “I’m driving” is already predefined, this is the response that we will give to an incoming WhatsApp message or other similar notification.
  • To be able to change it and answer what we want, we must click on “automatic answer” and decide that we want to answer by default when we are behind the wheel.
  • When we have finished entering the text, we will click on the “Accept” button.

Manage your cars

It is possible that we have more than one car compatible with Android Auto due to the great diversity of models that exist, below we will show you how to make these cars automatically connect to our mobile through Bluetooth and manage those that we no longer use .

First, let’s see how to do so that when our mobile detects that we are in the car, it starts Android Auto:

  • We open Android Auto.
  • Click on the upper left.
  • We select “Settings”.
  • We will go down to the section “Phone screen settings”.
  • We press “Automatic start”, and then we will be shown a list of all the devices with which we have paired our phone, in order to be able to click on the vehicle or vehicles that have Android Auto.

In this way, when this application is opened directly, it is easier and faster to connect to Android Auto , without even having to open the Android Auto app.

In the connected cars section, if Android Auto fails us due to any circumstance in our vehicle, we have the possibility to see with the cars in which there are connection problems. Those cars that are correctly connected will also appear. If we click on the upper right, we can forget all the cars in one fell swoop.

Know the price of the nearest gas stations

Although it is not an Android Auto function as such, checking the price of the gas stations around us is possible through Waze. It is always more advisable to know specific apps to know where the cheapest diesel or gasoline is.

  • In order to carry out the process, it is necessary to have a Waze download, since it is through this browser that we will know the gasoline prices.
  • Click on the arrows icon, if we have Waze as the default browser, or on the contrary, we go to the main menu and open the app.
  • Once Waze is inside the Android Auto interface, we will click on the magnifying glass icon located in the lower left and click on the gas stations icon.
  • Afterwards, we will be shown the different prices of the gas stations that are around us. This is very useful when we are traveling, or simply to be able to check the prices of our nearby gas stations to decide which of them is better for our pocket to stop.

As we have commented, specific applications for each type of fuel such as diesel or gasoline are always more reliable , so it is convenient to have them on hand on our mobile, since generally this is not the only function that we can do with them by offering reliable prices.

After this guide, it is very possible that the perception of Android Auto has changed, since it serves much more than to show us a simpler interface and ultimately, a bigger one. But as we have seen we can do much more than that, from using applications, to consulting the Google assistant or even calling contacts.

We must bear in mind that Android Auto is designed so that when stopped we can perform different actions quickly and continue the march, not so that we consult our mobile phone while driving since, the consequences could be terrible.


by Abdullah Sam
I’m a teacher, researcher and writer. I write about study subjects to improve the learning of college and university students. I write top Quality study notes Mostly, Tech, Games, Education, And Solutions/Tips and Tricks. I am a person who helps students to acquire knowledge, competence or virtue.

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