Android Auto has been gaining quite an enjoyer since its release in 2015 with more than 150 million users. However, some cars might not be compatible with the device, or they might not suit your liking. Whatever the case, you can always opt for Android Auto alternatives, which you can find in this article.
A Glimpse of Android Auto: What Is It?
Car accident due to phone usage is not a matter to be overlooked. Generally, using the phone behind the wheel has been the cause of 1.6 million crashes each year, and that needs to change.
That is when Android Auto comes into the scene.
Android Auto is a car dashboard device developed by Google in order to reduce distractions while driving. It was introduced during the Google I/O event back in 2014, and it launched a year later.
Basically, what Android Auto offer is moving the phone’s essential features, such as navigation, calls and messages, and entertainment to the dashboard. And, instead of using Android’s default apps, it integrates with third-party apps such as Waze, Spotify, and WhatsApp, so you won’t miss anything while on the go.
Moreover, Android Auto utilizes Google Assistant to operate, which means you can navigate your way through the device using voice commands. There are also various options to connect your phone app to the device, such as using a USB cable and Bluetooth.
Then, how do you get Android Auto on the car?
Fortunately, Android Auto is pre-installed in some cars – mostly the newest models. it’s available in many cars, from Alfa Romeo to Subaru, from Maserati to the classic Honda and Toyota.
However, the service won’t be available to older car models. In fact, in 2022, Google stopped the on-screen feature of Android Auto altogether and replaced it with Google Assistant Driving Mode.
The change of policy and the fact that it’s not available in many locations and languages often lead people to find a replacement for Android Auto. If you’re one of them, the answer is in the list below.
What Can I Use Instead of Android Auto?
Various applications are similar to Android Auto, and each has strengths and drawbacks. Luckily, you don’t have to try each one to know which suits you better. All you have to do is check out these recommendations below.
1. Automate Car Dashboard
When it comes to being beginner-friendly, Automate Car Dashboard is one of the best alternatives to Android Auto. The fact that it has a simple UI makes Automate easy to navigate. In addition to that, you can also get it for free.
Feature-wise, Automate shares the same feature as Android Auto. It has a voice command feature and the ability to access messaging, navigation, and entertainment apps. Though, the choices of third-party apps you can integrate into the device are broader than what Android Auto has.
However, the highlight of Automate lies in its full-customizability feature. You can add the widgets of your liking, such as weather updates of your area and even a speedometer.
To make your driving experience distraction-free, Automate also offers a shortcut to your frequently-contacted buttons and event reminders.
Moreover, there is also a Premium Pack if you want to get very useful features such as traffic camera locations, gas stations, and hands-free features.
Automate is connected to your car via Bluetooth and is available for Android 4.1 and above. If you want to get the app, it’s available on Play Store.
2. Drivemode: Safe Driving
“Seamless” is the word you can expect on Drivemode. Instead of giving you fancy yet unnecessary features, Drivemode allows you to customize the features you need most. How is Drivemode vs Android Auto?
Upon installing the app, you’ll find the option to add frequently-visited as well as frequently-contacted buttons for easy access. Not stopping there, Drivemode also requires you to connect to your favorite music player from the beginning, so you won’t fumble with it later.
Sometimes, you won’t know you need a certain feature until you have it. Drivemode’s “Don’t Disturb” mode, live-location sharing, and auto-connect feature might be one of them.
With “Don’t Disturb mode”, you’ll be able to focus on the road a little bit more by ignoring all the incoming calls and messages. Meanwhile, with the auto-connect and live-location sharing feature, you’ll save time on unnecessary rituals before you hit the road.
Drivemode is available on Play Store for free. And, in case you have two devices, Drivemode Dash on App Store can also be a good Android Auto Alternative for iPhone.
3. Car Dashdroid – Car Infotainment
Prefer a full-customization ability but with a simple interface? Give Car Dashdroid a try.
Forget sliding the screen multiple times. With Car Dashdroid, you’ll only have three slides containing every app you deem essential.
On the first slide, you’ll see the ‘Home’ display, which contains all the information you might need, such as weather and temperature update. Moreover, it also contains the shortcut to your contact list and your most visited locations.
Slide the screen to the right, then you’ll get a more detailed contact list, which you can also command using voice control.
Meanwhile, if you slide to the left, you’ll find eight empty widget-like buttons to connect to the third-party apps of your choice. Fancy checking the stock price movement before hitting the road? Simply connect Car Dashdroid to your favorite stock app.
Moreover, you can also pick your favorite theme to make the interface even fancier. There are also some useful widgets, such as a speedometer, battery level, and compass.
Car Dashdroid can connect to your car through a USB cable or Bluetooth. To get it, simply download it on Play Store for free.
4. AutoZen – Car Dashboard and Launcher
Compared to the other Android Auto substitutes, AutoZen surely needs a popularity boost. However, despite this fact, it’s just as functional as the others.
AutoZen covers your driving needs down to the essentials. It can help you manage calls and texts, navigate your way in the street, and play your favorite tunes.
Moreover, you can also get some good-to-know information, especially when you’re on the road, such as weather updates and speed camera locations. it’s very customizable, and you can get any widgets and applications you might need.
However, what’s most useful in AutoZen’s voice reply feature, where you reply to texts immediately, without even looking at the screen. It also has a light and dark mode, which is useful for night driving. With that feature, AutoZen can be a good Android Auto alternative for motorcycles.
AutoZen is available on Play Store at no cost at all.
5. HERE WeGo
HERE WeGo is a little bit different than the ones mentioned above. Instead of being a one-for-all app, HERE WeGo focuses only on the navigation feature.
In other words, its function resembles Google Maps more than Android Auto. But the good news is, just like Google Maps, you can connect HERE WeGo as a third-party app.
In fact, HERE WeGo provides features that not even Google Maps has, such as a speedometer, fuel gauge, and information about public transportation. Those features will definitely support anyone behind the wheel, bikers, and even public transport users.
You can also download the map to read offline later, meaning that you can save some data when you’re on the road. Moreover, it has a textual direction option and also the ability to receive voice commands. Interested in trying HERE WeGo?
When it comes to driving assistant applications, some drivers don’t only prefer functionality but also a clean and bold interface. That is when DashLinQ comes to play.
DashLinQ offers an interface with big and clear elements, which will help any driver see and operate the display better.
Feature-wise, DashLinQ provides the basic necessities of driving. For example, text and calls management, music player, and of course, navigation.
However, GROM Audio as the app developer makes sure that you get a wide variety of third-app parties you can connect to.
Ranging from the basic to the rare ones: you can have Google Music, Spotify, Web Radio, and even Pandora. Furthermore, you can install a browser in the app, although avoiding using it while driving is better.
In short, this app is a great choice if you prefer the one-for-all application. All you have to do is to make sure you don’t get easily distracted by the fanciness that is DashLinQ.
Now let’s go back to the app that focuses on one feature, and this time it’s a navigation feature.
Waze service focuses on providing you with a map, and the app makes sure you get all the information you want. Aside from the classic navigation feature, you’ll also have information on the nearest gas stations, real-time traffic updates, and even construction work along your driving route.
Furthermore, you can also input your car type in the app, which will help the system to assist you on the road, and last but certainly not least, you can also connect Waze to the event reminder, pick up phone calls automatically, and even a music player.
Waze is already quite popular in multiple countries, so you don’t have to worry about location coverage.
8. Car Home Ultra
What to do when your Android Auto is not working? One of the solutions is to get Car Home Ultra as a substitute.
When it comes to Car Home Ultra, the one feature that steals the heart of many is its ability to auto-start. It automatically connects as soon as you step into the car, as long as the Bluetooth is on.
On display, you’ll see the status of your surrounding, including your current location, temperature, and time. As an add-on, you can also have a speedometer, a compass, and even a toggle to turn on the night mode.
Car Home Ultra is so easy to set up that even beginners can do it. The system operates with voice commands and has a free 30-day trial program. And, of course, when you subscribe to the full pack, you’ll have many more interesting features on hand.
9. AGAMA Car Launcher
AGAMA Car Launcher is the one app you should go to if what you aim for is simplicity, but still fancy-looking nonetheless.
From the get-go, AGAMA Car Launcher provides you with a straightforward yet futuristic that you can easily customize. You can change the interface logo according to your car brand, and you can also change the theme colors.
Moreover, AGAMA Car Launcher also bears 24 fully-programmable buttons on the interface for easy access. But, even without customization, the developer already provides you with all the essential buttons, such as navigation, internet radio, music player, and even video player.
In one of the latest updates, AGAMA Car Launcher adds a camera button feature for the radar detector. Guaranteed, it will make your driving experience even better.
AGAMA Car Launcher is available in two packs; the free version and the pro version, using the in-app purchases scheme.
The last recommendation is CarOS. You might notice that suitable to its name, it’s only available for Apple users for now. Regardless, it’s still a great choice as the substitute for Android Auto.
CarOS’ interface is clean, with big icons and clean background. The big features are pretty basic, yet decent, such as phone calls, texting, navigation, and a music player.
When you’re driving, CarOS makes sure you’re distraction-free, yet being as informative as it can. The route displayed on the map is clear, and you can still have access to the other features. Moreover, it also provides information on the nearest parking area, gas stations, restaurants, and groceries.
However, the real ‘magic’ happens when you unlock the premium pack. There are advanced features in the package, such as “Find My Car”, face control, and a dashcam camera. Subscribe for a lifetime bundle, and you’ll get free shipping, a magnetic phone holder, and a dual USB car charger.
At the end of the day, when it comes to Android Auto alternatives, it all comes down to preference. Hopefully, you’ll find these recommendations useful.