Back in October, Google added a Bluetooth-based auto-launch for its Android Auto replacement. The latest way to launch Google Assistant Driving Mode is through a simple homescreen shortcut.

After launching Driving Mode, users in recent days have encountered an “Add driving mode to Home screen” suggestion pill at the bottom of the app grid. Tapping takes you to the standard system sheet for placing an app shortcut.

The “Driving” icon itself is a white car outline against a dark background with the Google app logo at the bottom-right corner. Hitting opens the recently-introduced Assistant Driving Mode homescreen/feed experience.

This button joins the ability to have Driving Mode automatically launch when it connects to your car’s Bluetooth or when vehicle movement is detected. There’s also a handful of voice commands: “Hey Google, let’s drive,” “start Driving Mode,” etc.

It mimics how the old Android Auto for Phone Screens experience, which has been officially retired in Android 12, could be launched with just a tap and no voice input. Assistant Driving Mode users are encountering this shortcut with the latest Google app beta (12.47) this week.

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Abner Li

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