Android Auto Gets Ready to Drive Your Car
Hyundai claimed today it has become the first car company to launch Android Auto on production vehicles. Android Auto is premiering on the 2015 Sonata with Navigation at dealerships, and will later become available on other Hyundai models.
“Android Auto aligns with Hyundai’s core interior design principles of safety, intuitiveness and simplicity,” said Dave Zuchowski, president and CEO, Hyundai Motor America.
Android Auto not only brings a high technology experience to Hyundai owners, but also improves safety, says the company.
For example, at any given daylight moment across America, approximately 660,000 drivers are using cell phones or manipulating electronic devices while driving, a number that has held steady since 2010.
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Android Auto helps keep drivers’ eyes and attention on the road by integrating the advanced driving-related functions of the user’s smartphone with the familiar centralized screen, physical controls and microphone of their car.
Furthermore, the smartphone’s screen becomes “locked,” so drivers are not tempted to look down and interact with their phones directly while Android Auto is in use.
Owners of existing 2015 Sonata with Navigation can get the Android Auto software update free of charge at Hyundai dealers starting today.
Later this summer, owners can visit the site and download the Android Auto software onto a USB memory drive. Owners will need a MyHyundai account to start the Android Auto download. A MyHyundai account requires name, address and a Vehicle Identification Number (VIN).
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Once the USB with the Android Auto software is inserted into their Sonata’s USB port, it will automatically update the vehicle’s Navigation system to make it Android Auto compatible.
The Android Auto compatible Navigation system with an eight-inch touchscreen display is available on the Sonata Sport, Eco, Limited, Sport 2.0T and Limited 2.0T models.
Owners will need the Android 5.0 “Lollipop” operating system or later, and the Android Auto companion app on their compatible phone to integrate Android Auto into Sonata’s screen and controls.
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A micro USB cable is required to connect the phone to the car’s USB port. The first time an owner plugs his or her phone into their parked Sonata, the phone will prompt the download of the Android Auto companion app from the Google Play.
Users of Android Auto will instantly recognize familiar Android phone applications, such as Google Maps, Google Now, messaging, phone calling and Google Play Music upon connecting their Android phone to their Hyundai vehicle.
These applications can be controlled by voice, steering wheel controls and touchscreen. Android Auto also will offer many popular third-party audio apps that owners have on their phones, including iHeartRadio, Spotify, TuneIn, NPR, Stitcher, Skype, TextMe and more. Owners can find out up-to-date information about phone compatibility.
Advantages of Android Auto
- The Google Now card-based experience provides suggested locations and travel times based on the user’s searches, calendar entries and home and office locations, as well as weather information and “now playing” information for music streamed via the phone
- App software (navigation, streaming music, etc.) is automatically updated because the apps live on the phone
- Natural voice recognition with Google voice actions
- Owners can easily bring their personal reminders, suggested destinations, calendar appointments and music preferences with them when they get in their car
- Android Auto automatically pairs with the Sonata for phone calls through Bluetooth when connected for the first time via USB
- Android Auto has familiar interfaces that are easy to use and have almost no learning curve
Hyundai Motor America, headquartered in Fountain Valley, Calif., is a subsidiary of Hyundai Motor Co. of Korea.
Photo courtesy: Hyundai