Finally following Apple's lead, Google's Android Auto smartphone interface for cars is finally here. Think using Android on your phone for more than just navigation but to have it integrated into your dashboard for texts, hands-free calling as well as app integration.
Waiting for the new car toys
How does it work, exactly? What you do is install the companion app on your phone and then use the app to connect to the in-car receiver you must install to use the feature. Pioneer will apparently be the first in the US to release Android Auto in-car tech.
The highest spec Pioneer offering is the AVIC-8100NEX that features a capacitive touchscreen and has the added bonus of also working with Apple's CarPlay so you won't have to get rid of the device should you swith phones. What does this flexibility cost? US$1,400.
It's likely that in-car techmakers who already make CarPlay devices might follow Pioneer's lead and just update the software of their devices to support both platforms. With there being far more people on Android than iOS, will that trend continue on the integrated tech dashboard front? We'll just have to see.