Android Auto Will Get a New Google Assistant Feature to Do Everything Faster

Google is silently working on overhauling the experience with Google Assistant in the car, and according to a recent discovery, part of the focus right now seems to be on Android Auto.
Shortcuts in Google Assistant 1 photo
Photo: Mishaal Rahman
More specifically, the Mountain View-based search giant wants users to be able to access their Google Assistant routines easier, right from the screens in their cars.

To do this, Google is working on shortcuts for Google Assistant, essentially allowing us to create a custom action for each command and then save it with a dedicated icon to the Android Auto launcher.

How this works is pretty simple. A new menu called Google Assistant Actions will show up in the mobile app on your Android device, and it will let you define just two things, namely the Assistant command and the launcher icon.

But as you can see in the screenshots published on Twitter by Mishaal Rahman of XDA, the launcher icon is automatically generated based on the first letter of the name you use for the newly-created action. Once you’re done and tap the “Add” button, the shortcut is saved to your Android Auto app screen with the said icon.

While one-tap access to the commands you use the most sounds great, this approach is debatable, to say the least. Drivers running Android Auto in their cars would have to take their eyes off the road and look at the screen to search for the shortcut, even if theoretically, they could very well use the voice command to require the Assistant to run the action.

On the other hand, the custom routines could come in handy in non-English speaking countries where users still want to use Google Assistant for more advanced actions. This way, they can stick with English and be sure that the Assistant responds accordingly, no matter if we’re talking about common things like setting up the navigation or controlling a smart home.
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About the author: Bogdan Popa
Bogdan Popa profile photo

Bogdan keeps an eye on how technology is taking over the car world. His long-term goals are buying an 18-wheeler because he needs more space for his kid’s toys, and convincing Google and Apple that Android Auto and CarPlay deserve at least as much attention as their phones.
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