Android Auto is best known for being a way to access your phone through your car dashboard – it allows you to easily access Google Maps, music apps, and data without having to use your phone. But for years, Google has also offered Android Auto right on the phone for people who don’t have a compatible dashboard device. More recently, Google has also been working on a “driving with assistant” mode (pictured above), which arrived earlier this year after several delays. However, now that Google Assistant’s driving mode has ended, the company will no longer offer the old version of Android Auto on phones running Android 12.
Google Statement shared with 9to5Google confirms this plan. In a statement, Google Assistant’s driving mode is our next evolution in mobile driving. “For people using Android Auto in supported vehicles, this experience is not going anywhere. Those using the phone (Android Auto mobile app) will be put into the Google Assistant driving mode. Starting with Android 12, Google Assistant’s driving mode will become a built-in mobile driving feature. We currently have no additional details to share. “
Before Google confirmed the change, some Pixel owners running Android 12 received a notification when trying to launch the Android Auto app on their phones. It said that Android Auto is now “only available for car screens” and recommended that you try the Google Driving Assistant instead. Given that the new Google Assistant experience will clearly be in the spotlight in the future, the transition probably doesn’t matter much to most people. But if you don’t update your phone to Android 12, you should be able to keep running the Android Auto app, at least for the time being.
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