Android Auto launches, is a lot like Apple CarPlay but the voice commands will probably work better

Android Auto

It’s been pretty obvious for a while now that the car would be the next space to be targeted by tech’s biggest players. It makes sense. Given the role smartphones have come to play in our lives, anyone who can let us keep as much of that experience as possible while we’re behind the wheel is bound to gain a competitive advantage.

BlackBerry pretty much squandered the early advantage it had with QNX leaving the space open to Apple (which launched CarPlay a little while back), Microsoft and, of course Google. And at it I/O developers’ conference yesterday, Google gave us a look at how it intends to tackle the car space.

Now while we knew that it was working on something as far back as January, it’s only now that it has a name — Android Auto — and that it stands a very good chance of claiming a big slice of the connected car market.

Like CarPlay, Android Auto requires you to connect your phone in for full access, but given the advances Google’s made in voice over the past few years, the range of stuff it allows you to do seems pretty impressive.

You will, for instance, be able to send texts, get directions and other useful information and access Google Play Music. Developers meanwhile should be able to start building customised apps for the new system fairly shortly with the release of the SDK imminent.

Perhaps more impressive and certainly more crucial to its long term success however is the number of automotive partners it has onboard.

Everyone from Alfa to Volvo is there with BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Ferarri among the few notable exceptions.

For more info on how the system works, check out the video below:



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