Android Auto

Sony XAV-AX200 car audio system includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support

Sony XAV-AX200 car audio system includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support

The focus these days on self-driving smart cars and built-in Apple CarPlay or Android Auto may seem to make more focused and dedicated in-car audio systems obsolete. Sony’s latest announcement reminds car owners and lovers that there’s always room for both. In particular, the new XAV-AX200 receiver supports both infotainment platforms, just like its predecessor, the XAV-AX100 pictured above. Sony, however, also throws in a feature that may sound old school by now: a DVD player.

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Waze Android Auto hands-on: The reason for Android-in-the-car

Waze Android Auto hands-on: The reason for Android-in-the-car

Ask any Android Auto user what app they've been most eagerly awaiting, and the answer will probably be Waze. Sure, Google Maps is one of the best navigation apps around, but for the true road warrior there's no replacing its speeding ticket-saving cousin. The good news is that Waze for Android Auto is here, and I've been testing it out to see if it was worth the wait.

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Waze finally arrives on Android Auto (but it’s in beta)

Waze finally arrives on Android Auto (but it’s in beta)

As odd as it sounds, Waze has long been one of the apps not available on Android Auto, the automotive rendition of Android. That was odd, considering that Waze is both a Google app and a transportation app, but times are changing and the product is now finally available in cars. The availability comes in the form of a private beta, however, and there are select vehicles that don't yet have support for the app.

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Ford is updating 2016 SYNC 3 cars with CarPlay and Android Auto

Ford is updating 2016 SYNC 3 cars with CarPlay and Android Auto

Ford is rolling out Apple CarPlay and Android Auto to its earlier SYNC 3 cars, with a hotly-anticipated update for its model year 2016 vehicles. SYNC 3 version 2.2 will be available both via a dealer-installed update and via a DIY method, with owners able to load the new software onto a USB stick themselves. However, for the first time, Ford will also offer an over-the-air update as a third option, part of its shift to bring some smartphone-style thinking to its infotainment platforms.

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Pioneer 2017 NEX in-dash receivers turn any car into a smartphone

Pioneer 2017 NEX in-dash receivers turn any car into a smartphone

Not everyone needs a hi-tech, and expensive, "smart" car, but almost no one will deny the entertainment and navigation benefits that come with our smartphones. For some car owners, especially those with older models, an upgrade just isn't possible. Thankfully, Pioneer has a new batch of NEX in-dash DIN multimedia receivers that can give any car, even older ones, a taste of the future.

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Cadillac’s next-gen CUE gets Tesla-style updates, new UI

Cadillac’s next-gen CUE gets Tesla-style updates, new UI

Ask Cadillac drivers the one thing they wish the luxury car company would update, and you'll probably hear "the CUE infotainment system" most often. CUE, the touchscreen multimedia and navigation software found in cars like the CT6 and XT5, certainly wasn't lacking in ambition, but neither has it been called the most user-friendly system. Now, that's all set to change with a brand new version.

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Learning to love Apple CarPlay

Learning to love Apple CarPlay

If Apple is truly working on a car, as all the rumors suggest, then CarPlay is the visible tip of that iceberg. While I appreciated Apple's aim of distilling the familiar essentials from your iPhone in a way that was both safe and convenient while you're driving, it's taken me some time to appreciate what the fairly barebones interface has to offer. Still, it's more of a Stockholm syndrome relationship than I'd care to admit: I'm warming to CarPlay primarily because most in-car systems are so bad.

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Sony XAV-AX100 Now Shipping, Adds Apple CarPlay and Android Auto to your Ride

Sony XAV-AX100 Now Shipping, Adds Apple CarPlay and Android Auto to your Ride

Back in August we first talked about the Sony XAV-AX100 car audio system. The big features of the device is that it brings both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay to vehicles that didn't come with that capability from the factory. When the AX100 was first announced it was set to launch in late November. It is available now via Amazon.com for $499.99.

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Amid distraction fears, Android Auto gets “Ok Google” voice trigger

Amid distraction fears, Android Auto gets “Ok Google” voice trigger

Google has enabled "Ok Google" voice triggers to Android Auto, allowing users of the in-car interface to issue commands or dictate messages without having to press a button first. Designed to increase in-car safety while still offering access to smartphone features users have progressively become dependent on, Android Auto relies on a customized interface designed for easier use while on the move. Until now, though, it had required users either press an on-screen button or a button on the steering wheel to actually get the system's attention.

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The government wants to cripple your phone while driving

The government wants to cripple your phone while driving

US driving safety regulators are pushing for a strict limit on what smartphone tech can be used in the car, recommending phones go into lockdown when plugged into the dashboard. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has published its first set of guidelines on driver distraction for portable and aftermarket devices, effectively outlining its goals for cutting down on unsafe smartphone use while at the wheel. Though not a law, it's nonetheless a strict set of suggestions for how platforms like iOS and Android should behave, including limitations on apps and features that may leave drivers frustrated.

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Now you can use Android Auto without upgrading your car

Now you can use Android Auto without upgrading your car

Android Auto looks set to show up on a lot more dashboards, albeit as a phone clipped to a mount rather than built into the native infotainment system. The interface, which pares back Android into a chunkier, more finger-friendly layout for use while driving, while hiding the more complex features that could prove a distraction, is being released as a standalone system, Google announced today. It's the closest we've got so far to an admission by the Android team that Android Auto adoption among automakers may not have been as swift as they would've preferred.

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Google Maps adds speed limits to Android app and Android Auto

Google Maps adds speed limits to Android app and Android Auto

We have all been cruising down the road at one time or another and wondered exactly what the speed limit was on the road. Often this thought comes to mind right after we see a police car. The problem is for a lot of the roads there are no speed limit signs or they are few and far between. Google has an update for its Google Maps app rolling out that will help us know what the speed limit is.

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