More Big Apps Coming to Android Automotive

Android Automotive in the Polestar 2 10 photos
Photo: Polestar
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Android Automotive is a platform that’s continuously evolving, and it’s not difficult to figure out why Google is so committed to improving it.
As compared to Android Auto, the operating system offers more advanced integration with Google’s own services, including here Google Maps and Google Assistant.

Therefore, the search giant keeps users connected even while driving, in many ways expanding the Android experience beyond the small screen of the mobile device.

One essential part of Android Automotive is the app ecosystem, and Google knows this very well. While many popular apps are already there, the Mountain View-based search giant needs the ecosystem to keep growing, especially with new categories that make sense behind the wheel.

The company has confirmed this week that it would expand Android Automotive support for all Points of Interest apps. At this point, Android Automotive apps can already download and install software like parking solutions and charging utilities, but Google is now expanding the category with support for all POI apps out there.

The company says it’s already working with a series of big developers out there, including MochiMochi, Fuelio, Prezzi Benzina, and NAVITIME JAPAN. For now, however, there’s no ETA as to when the launch of these apps could happen on Android Automotive, though it’s expected to take place later this year.

Android Automotive is now also allowing users to download and install beta builds of certain applications. In other words, users can help run early versions of their favorite software and help polish the experience before a stable release is prepared, just like it happens on PC and mobile.

Google says the beta programs are available for Polestar 2 and Volvo owners, and they currently include charging apps, such as ChargePoint and PlugShare, parking utilities, including SpotHero and Parkwhiz, and two navigation solutions, namely Flitsmeister and Sygic.

Most likely, additional apps will be available in the beta program rather sooner than later, but for now, you can try this out by joining the Google Group and manually opting in for each app.
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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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