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How to Fix Android Auto Connection Problems on a Google Pixel 5

In theory, a Google phone should have absolutely no problem running a Google app, but Pixel 5 owners certainly know this isn’t always the case.
Google Pixel 5 1 photo
Launched in the fall of the last year with much fanfare, the Pixel 5 is now Google’s latest and greatest phone, yet it still has a hard time running Android Auto.

These problems were first reported in November last year, with users turning to Google’s forums to ask the search giant for a fix that would restore Android Auto in their cars.The problem
First and foremost, here’s what happens. Launching Android Auto with a Google Pixel 5 doesn’t work because the app is no longer recognized; therefore the icon doesn’t show up on the head unit so it's pretty much impossible to start it.

Others say they managed to get Android Auto up and running, only that it crashes at random times, sometimes after only a few seconds or minutes.

Same issue in a VW Golf. My old Pixel 2 worked flawlessly with the same high-quality cable in the same car. Weirdly, sometimes it works perfectly for the whole trip and other times it disconnects nearly constantly. I always use the same car and the same cable, so I have to assume that the phone is at fault - maybe a software issue, since it's so inconsistent?” one user posted on Google’s forums.

The good news is Google has already confirmed it’s looking into the whole thing, only that a fix is yet to be released. The company also hasn’t shared an ETA as to when it could go live.

The fixes
While everybody’s waiting for Google to come up with a solution, here are the things you could try to restore Android Auto in your car if a Google Pixel 5 is being used.

First and foremost, make sure you are running the latest Android, Android Auto, Google Play Services, and Google app versions. The newest releases bring additional improvements for the experience behind the wheel, and the previous Pixel updates too polished the Android Auto support.

Then, you should try the generic workarounds that involve clearing the cache and deleting the data of Android Auto and other linked apps. This is something that occasionally resolves connectivity issues because it helps get rid of corrupted data.

One thing that apparently works for others is a full reset of Bluetooth configurations, and this includes not only the settings you made on your Pixel 5 but also on the head unit in the car. So completely reset the Bluetooth profiles and then repair the devices. Starting from scratch could help deal with the whole thing.

Others say changing the cable used to power Android Auto did the trick. For some reason, the cable coming in the box isn’t necessarily the best choice when it comes to running Android Auto, and I’ve seen several users claiming a Google Pixel 2 or Pixel 3 cable actually brings things back to normal when it comes to powering the car experience on a Pixel 5. Just stick with a high-quality USB-C cable, and you should be fine. Learn here how to choose the best cable for Android Auto.

If nothing works, try to go to wireless. If your head unit supports it, the wireless mode could help deal with the connectivity struggles caused by bad cables. Of course, if the head unit only works with wired connections, this isn’t really an option.

At this point, Google is yet to provide info as to when a fix could land, so if nothing works, just head over to the page linked above and send additional logs to the company to help investigate the bug.


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