‘Designed with safety in mind’, Android Auto will now be available in India along with 18 other countries. Developed by Google, Android Auto lets you connect your mobile phone running the Android operating system to connect with automobiles through the dashboard's head unit.
Convenient and handy, Android Auto lets the driver control GPS mapping/navigation, music playback, SMS, telephony, and web search. Compatible apps include Google Maps, Google Play Music, MLB at Bat, Spotify, Songza, Stitcher, iHeart Radio, and TuneIn.
Both touch screen and button-controlled head unit displays are supported, although hands-free operation through voice commands is emphasized to ensure safer driving.
Other than India, Android Auto will be available in Brazil, Chile, Austria, Colombia, Argentina, Dominican Republic, Paraguay, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Russia, Panama, Ecuador, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, Peru, Switzerland and Uruguay.
In India, the service will be compatible with Audi, Chevrolet, Honda, Hyundai, Mahindra and Skoda.
Last year, Indian car maker Mahindra announced support for Android Auto and it is expected to launch new cars with the system. Car infotainment makers like Pioneer are expected to release models that can be fitted as after-market upgrades based on Android Auto.
To use Android Auto, you need an Android Auto compatible vehicle or aftermarket radio and an Android phone running 5.0 (Lollipop) or higher. When the Android phone is connected to the compatible vehicle or radio, the application will be displayed on the screen organized into simple cards.