Google gives up Android Auto interface for mobile phones. The company now encourages the use of the Assistant Driving Mode interface, a simpler alternative that does not provide access to the same type of functionality. It seems that Google now wants the features available in Android Auto to be used exclusively on the screen of a compatible car, while Assistant Driving Mode will replace those features for those who do not have a compatible infotainment system.
The Android Auto interface for phones is being replaced with Driving Mode
To clarify, Google no longer wants to use the Android Auto interface on phones. When activated, the buttons become larger and you can only access certain applications on your phone that are compatible with this mode. You also have quick access to some quick capabilities. Only this Android Auto component disappears with this transition. Connecting your phone to the infotainment system of a compatible car will still give you access to the Android Auto interface.
However, Google wants users to use the Assistant Driving Mode feature, which shows only a few shortcuts to certain features of the phone, such as navigation, calls or messages, and access to frequently called contacts, frequently visited places, or music playback.
Those trying to use the Auto app on their smartphones will now be directed to Driving Mode in Google Assistant. Nor does it seem a coincidence that this transition comes just a month before Android 12 is released. Most likely, it will no longer allow the installation of the Android Auto application, probably with the functionality for cars already included.
In fact, even Google says that users who used Android Auto or Android Automotive interfaces on car screens will not be affected by this change.