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Google updates Android Auto to better fit all the different sized touchscreens in cars today

Google updates Android Auto to better fit all the different sized touchscreens in cars today

Android Auto is getting another fresh refresh, this time with a focus on the evolving nature of vehicle touchscreens.

Google says the new split-screen display will be standard for all Android Auto users, allowing them to access key features like navigation, media player and messages - all from a single screen. Previously, split-screen display was only available to owners of certain vehicles. Now, this will be the default user experience for all Android Auto customers.

"We used to have a separate screen mode that was available in a very limited amount of cars," said Ron Lopez, Android Auto's principal product manager. "Now it's available, no matter what type of display you have, what size, what form factor, and it's a really, really exciting update."

Android Auto will be compatible with any type of touchscreen, whatever the size. Automakers are starting to get creative with the size of their infotainment displays, installing everything from large portrait-style screens to tall verticals the size of surfboards. Google says Android Auto will now suit all those varieties.

"We've seen some really interesting innovation from the industry, going from these very large portrait displays to these extremely detailed landscape displays," Lopez said. "And you know, the coolness is that Android Auto will now support all of them, and you as a user will be able to customize it by giving you all of these features at your fingertips."

Lopez acknowledged that screens are getting bigger in cars, especially luxury vehicles like the Mercedes-Benz EQS, with its 56-inch-wide hyperscreen (which is actually three separate screens embedded in a single pane of glass), or Cadillac Lyric's 33-inch LED infotainment display. He said Google is partnering with automakers to better adapt to Android Auto for this trend.

"This was part of the new inspiration behind this redesign, being able to better optimize our product for the vehicles that are coming with these large portrait displays and massive widescreen displays," Lopez said. "And so our approach is really working closely with these OEMs [original equipment manufacturers] to make sure things make sense and they work."

As the screen gets bigger, so too are the chances of drivers being more distracted by their display. A recent study found that drivers who selected music with Apple CarPlay or Android Auto had slower reaction times than those who smoked pot. Google has been trying to work their way through this problem for several years now, but they have yet to find a definitive solution.

Lopez said safety is "at the top" for the Android Auto product team, prompting them to work closely with OEMs to ensure that the experience is perfectly integrated into the design of the car to minimize distraction. is integrated.

In addition to keeping pace with different screen sizes, Google is rolling out several other updates as well. Users will now be able to reply to text messages with standard replies that they can send with just one tap.

There are other entertainment options. Android Auto will now support Tubi TV and Epix Now streaming services. And Android phone owners can put their content directly on their car's screen.

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