Google’s Android Auto platform isn’t its own operating system. Rather, it is an extension of a connected Android smartphone which can display some apps, entertainment, and mirror messages on a car’s dashboard. The platform was announced in 2014 and received a major redesign in 2019.
Android Auto is designed to help keep driver’s attention on the road rather than their smartphone. The platform limits users to just a handful of apps, primarily those used for media such as Spotify, YouTube Music, and others. Mapping apps are also a core part of the platform with Google Maps and Waze both offering apps.
Users can take advantage of Android Auto in select vehicles that offer integration with the platform. There are over 500 different vehicles that offer Auto support from brands including Ford, Hyundai, Chevrolet, Nissan, Toyota, Subaru, and many others.
Not long after it originally debuted, Google also added an experience for smartphone screens, but that was removed in favor of a new Google Assistant driving mode.
You can learn more about Google’s platform in our continued coverage below, and read our review of the updated design here.