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Mysterious Bug Kills Android Auto in Unsupported Countries

Not a long time ago, we reported that Android Auto suddenly stopped working in Hong Kong due to what appeared to be a bad update. Still, the more users come across the same problem, the more information emerges on what exactly is happening.
Android Auto home screen 1 photo
And this time, it could be bad news for many more users, not only those living in Hong Kong.

Here’s the thing. Officially, Android Auto has never been supported in Hong Kong, but of course, there are several ways to install the app and get it running even in this region. Most people turn to the stand-alone APK installer that allows us to deploy and update Android Auto manually. In theory, pretty much anyone out there could use the app in their car if a compatible head unit exists.

But Hong Kong users discovered that the app just stopped working in January, and some of them believed Google banned them. Or at least, that’s what local carmakers allegedly told them.

According to someone who reached out to Google, however, AA no longer running has nothing to do with a ban, and it all comes down to a bug. And unfortunately, this bug could completely kill Android Auto in countries that aren’t officially supported.

The team has found an error code that are [sic] found when the Android Auto application is run in an unsupported country. Features won’t work if you use Android Auto outside of the supported countries,” the reply sent by Google reads.

Does this mean Android Auto no longer runs in all unsupported countries out there? Not really. I just checked with various users across the world where Android Auto isn’t officially launched and the app is still running, so I believe this problem only impacts some of them.

The worse thing is that Google’s response doesn’t mention anything about a potential fix. So yes, Google is aware of a bug in Android Auto that kills the app in unsupported regions. But does the company plan to patch it? Nobody knows.


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