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Google is already tweaking Android Auto ‘Coolwalk’ redesign with new animations, light theme

Android Auto is still in the process of rolling out its big dashboard redesign known as “Coolwalk,” but as that update slowly makes it way to users, Google is already making tweaks including updated animations and the potential of a light theme.

As we noted in our review of the Android Auto dashboard update, animations were one of the changes Google delivered that made the whole experience feel fresh. Everything was smoother and just more pleasant overall. But, apparently, the company wasn’t done.

Reddit user shmykelsa, who has a history of enabling new Android Auto features, showed off a tweak to “Coolwalk” with a new animation in place when switching between music and navigation apps.

The change, that is apparently tied to Android Auto v8.9 which just hit the beta channel recently, sees a new animation when the two experiences switch places on the “dashboard.” This replaces the existing animation, which fades out to black before showing the new app. This new animation appears to only be in place on wider screens, though. The dashboard in “Coolwalk” only shows music apps with a smaller map off to the side on wide screens, where on smaller screens music apps can either show to the side of maps, or as the fullscreen experience.

Below, you can see the two animations side by side, with the new look at the bottom.

Notably, too, this same user recently uncovered that Google seems to be working on a light theme for Android Auto’s revamp. This would be be a bit of a walkback on Google’s part, as 2019’s redesign of Android Auto did away with the light theme entirely. But still, it’s nice to see the option might become available, though it is in the very early days at the moment.

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