It seems Google will stop offering Android Auto on most devices in the future. Though this doesn’t mean goodbye to the current phone integration app, instead, the tech company will be replacing it with something else called the Google Assistant Driving Mode service.
Currently, Google Assistant Driving Mode is available on select devices that are running on the latest Android 12 Beta operating system. So how does it differ from the outgoing Android Auto? Is it really that better? For starters, Android Auto works as a standalone phone app while Google Assistant Driving Mode is integrated with the built-in Google Assistant feature built into most Android phones. In fact, users can find a Google Assistant bar displayed at the bottom which can be used to make phone calls, send or read messages, and even play music. On top of that, the app will allow users to get integrated navigation through the use of Google Maps.
Notably, its home screen is also useful even if you don’t have to use the navigation. You can still take advantage of the software by using it solely for media or other applications. More importantly, it also elevates the experience all thanks to a set of voice commands, allowing drivers to stay focused on the road and keep their hands on the steering wheel. Users that wish to use the new service can say "Hey Google, launch Driving Mode" or "Let's Drive."
So the new Google Assistant Driving Mode service is sort of similar to how the current Android Auto is operated. Though as mentioned, it can now be activated or launched through a set of voice commands, making the overall experience more convenient and safer while driving on the road.
Android Auto has served many local motorists well. In fact, several vehicles in the Philippine market already come standard with this feature. Not only does it provide drivers with better convenience, but it also saves them from probable distractions, therefore achieving a safer environment. Hopefully, the new and improved Google Assistant Driving Mode service will slowly roll out on different devices in the future, allowing the tech company to provide drivers a more seamless phone integration experience.