PROBLEMS WITH INSTALLING OR USING ANDROID AUTO IN MY CAR
Unfortunately, it can happen that everything does not work correctly and that you have difficulties getting Android Auto to work. Here are some tips to put in place to make your application work properly.
MAKE SURE THAT ANDROID AND THE ANDROID AUTO APPLICATION ARE UP TO DATE
There are many software updates available, try to be always up to date. If you have Android 5 or older, this could be where the software is starting to be too old.
RESET YOUR PHONE
Try uninstalling, reinstalling the Android Auto app, then turning your phone off and on again. A trick as old as the world, but which can solve more problems than one imagines.
USE A DIFFERENT USB CABLE WHEN CONNECTING
When you connect your phone to your car, the cable may be defective. Try another to see if the problem is there.
MAKE SURE YOU HAVE A SUFFICIENT INTERNET CONNECTION
When using Android Auto, you need to have a minimum stable internet connection. If you are in an area that is not receiving, that may be the problem. Try to walk around to see if the problem persists. Sometimes the network comes back when you turn on / off airplane mode on your smartphone.
Android Auto will soon be able to start automatically, without the help of the phone
Android Auto could soon automatically connect to your smartphone, without having to unlock it. This is in all that the bloggers of the site XDA Developers suggest, after having delved into the APK of the OS.
As you may know, Android Auto is a version of Google’s popular operating system designed to integrate into automotive dashboards. In other words, it is the solution put in place by the Mountain View firm to connect your Android smartphone to the on-board computer of your vehicle.
Via the Android Auto companion application, the user can simply control their favorite mobile applications from the on-board computer: make calls easily with the Google Assistant, launch your favorite playlist via Napster, Deezer, Spotify or other, obtain an itinerary via Google Maps, all without taking your eyes off the road.
AUTOMATIC CONNECTION WITHOUT GOING THROUGH THE UNLOCKING BOX
However, to be able to take advantage of Android Auto’s services, it is imperative to connect your smartphone to your car’s on-board computer, either via a USB wired connection or via a wireless connection. According to bloggers from the XDA Developers site, Google is preparing to make the process easier, by allowing Android Auto to automatically connect to your smartphone, without having to unlock your device.
Indeed, bloggers have got their hands on several interesting lines of code in the API of Android Auto 5.9:
name=“settings_connection_allowed_while_locked_description”>Even when your phone is locked
name=“settings_connection_allowed_while_locked_title”>Start Android Auto automatically
Currently, the Android Auto app launches automatically if you connect your wired phone and unlock it. However, it turns out that some on-board computers have difficulty launching Android Auto automatically when the smartphone is still locked. This new setting could help prevent these connection errors.
It is not yet clear whether this feature is intended for wired connections, wireless connections, or both. It will be necessary to wait for Google to deploy it to be clear about it. As a reminder, all smartphones running Android 11 can connect wirelessly to Android Auto since summer 2020.
It should also be noted that only smartphones running Android 11 can take advantage of the wireless connection to Android Auto. This should be temporary, however, as an accessory comparable to a USB dongle could solve the problem. Its launch is scheduled for 2021.
Guide – All the means to connect your smartphone to your car
Having a good infotainment system with GPS navigation is good. But for many, integrating their smartphone with their contacts, their music, their favorite navigation app is essential. Overview of existing solutions.
Small step back: at the start was the car radio, simply designed to receive live AM or FM radio. Then an integrated cassette player was added, the door open for the first adapters allowing CD playback in portable outdoor devices (Sony Discman, etc.).
Subsequently, car radios integrated as standard by manufacturers as well as aftermarket ones offered an auxiliary socket to connect any external source. Then some models have integrated a USB socket compatible with an MP3 player such as the Apple iPod.
Then, it was the beginning of the generalization of the Bluetooth connection, making it possible to transform the on-board audio installation into a hands-free kit for telephoning. Finally, the smartphone has arrived. It has already been used for more than a decade in the car, some of which have become essential (navigation with real-time traffic information, etc.), comfortable (music streaming), sometimes unnecessary or even dangerous (social networks, etc.), with different connectivity .
USB: the basic connection
There are two types of USB sockets: the classic socket, known as USB-A, is the one we have known for years on our computers, to connect USB keys or printers. It is this socket that allows you to charge your smartphone, or even connect it to the on-board system. Present on practically all vehicles on the market for many years, this socket is sometimes double, one providing the only charging, the other supporting a real connection (a pictogram generally indicates this): the latter is the only socket transmitting the data and, by means of a suitable cable, it is this which can connect apps to the car system.
The difference with / without data is the same for the most recent models equipped with mini-format USB-C plugs, a standard that is becoming more widespread. No problem, all you need is a specific cable or an adapter to be able to use it with any type of device.
- The Caradisiac opinion – Perfectly reliable, it is THE essential connection. Provide a dedicated cable for the car which will remain permanently and will ensure the connection for each trip.
Bluetooth connection: voice and music
The basic Bluetooth connection connects the phone’s audio wirelessly to the on-board sound system. This still allows you to simply make your calls and have access to your directory via the controls of the car and the radio. It also allows you to play your music (or podcasts, audio books, etc.) in the speakers in the passenger compartment. For older car radios that do not have a Bluetooth connection, the adapters allow this function to be added.
- The Caradisiac opinion – Indispensable for making safe (and legal) calls.
Wireless charging: the ease
This is a surface hiding an induction charger (they are all of the universal Qi standard). All you need to do is place your iPhone or Android compatible smartphone on it (among the models provided for wireless charging) to start charging, confirmed by a light symbol. Please note, this is not systematically associated with wireless Apple CarPlay and / or Android Auto connectivity (see below), many vehicles still require a wired connection to ensure “mirroring” (display of the screen). smartphone on the on-board screen of the car), it’s a bit of a shame …
- Caradisiac review – Easy to use, but charging is not as fast as with a wired connection. This solution is particularly useful when combined with Apple CarPlay or Android Auto wireless.
Apple CarPlay and Android Auto: find your smartphone on the on-board screen
Display the content of your smartphone in a secure way for automobile use (Waze navigation, Google Maps or Apple Maps, streaming music, audio playback of messages received, etc.): this is the objective of the so-called Apple CarPlay mirroring functions and Android Auto found on many infotainment systems today * i (sometimes optional).
The connection itself is conventionally done with a cable plugged into a USB socket (they must both be designed to transmit data), or even wirelessly using Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, a solution that is starting to develop in the ranges of the manufacturers (for example Audi or BMW, whereas Ford, Fiat or Renault come there).
- The Caradisiac opinion – An excellent compromise to benefit from the basic functions that a smartphone provides, in a format suitable for use at the wheel. Mirroring can thus replace the purchase of an expensive GPS navigation option.
Connection with the vehicle antenna: amplify the signal
At some manufacturers, especially in the Volkswagen Group (even on small models like the Polo), a vehicle antenna relay is sometimes added to the location of the wireless charging. More powerful than that integrated into the smartphone, the roof antenna automatically gives it a better signal when it is stored in this location. Enough to strengthen its connectivity and reduce the interruptions of conversation on the road, so annoying …
- The Caradisiac advisory – A little extra, especially for motorists operating in areas with poor network coverage.
Amazon Echo Auto: add voice commands
Even an old car stereo can benefit from a state-of-the-art personal assistant system! This is what the Amazon Echo Auto box (€ 35) offers, which uses the data connection of a smartphone and a sophisticated microphone system to be ready to access any voice request, as on a speaker connected with assistant in his living room. Thus is it possible to ask him to play the last downloaded music or to launch navigation towards the house. The display of the application on the smartphone screen is specific with a new auto mode, avoiding any unnecessary distraction.
For more modern vehicles which are equipped with Android Auto or Apple CarPlay, they naturally benefit from the native assistants of these systems, Google Assistant and Apple Siri.
- The Caradisiac opinion – A gadget for those who are not familiar with voice commands, but a great help for those more experienced in this interface.
Whether it is a state-of-the-art or older car model, the connection possibilities are numerous. Everyone will find their habits as they use it, between the possibilities of the on-board system and the advantages of the apps on their smartphone. But in the end, the most important thing is to distinguish between features that are distracted driving and those that are very useful, even pleasant, in use.