With Android 12, Google introduced the Google Assistant Driving Mode in a bid to replace Android Auto App Mode. The two – Google Assistant Driving Mode and Android Auto App Mode – are very similar to each other, and that is creating confusion among users. So, let us understand them better and how different or similar they are to each other.
So, Android Auto is an Android-based interface for your car’s display. Well, if your car has an infotainment system, then it must have some sort of operating system and a user interface to interact with it. So, Android Auto is the interface used to interact with your car. You can just connect your Android smartphone to the display in your car, and it will boot up the Android Auto.
There is one more thing known as Android Auto App Mode, which basically mimics the Android Auto on your smartphone.
What is Android Auto App Mode
First things first, Android Auto and Android Auto App Mode are two different things. The Android Auto App Mode can be enabled through the Android Auto app and shows a less distracting and simplified user interface showing just navigation, Google Assistant recommendations and music and messaging apps. In simple words, it is the Android Auto interface cramped up to fit in your smartphone’s display. But, it will soon be a thing of the past as Google wants to replace it with a new feature which would not require a separate app.
What is Google Assistant Driving Mode
Last year, Google announced a new feature for its Assistant dubbed Driving Mode. Instead of downloading an app, you can simply activate it using the voice command, or automatically get enabled as your smartphone detects that you are driving. And you get a very similar card-based interface as the Android Auto App Mode, which helps you not give much attention to your phone other than just looking for directions and a few other things that might be important even during a ride.
What is different and interesting about Google Assistant’s Driving Mode is that it reads the notification out loud so that you don’t have to look at your phone every time.
Can you use Android Auto App Mode now?
You can use it only if your car has an Android Auto-supported infotainment system. Also, if your smartphone is running Android 11 or older, you will have to use the Android Auto App Mode since the Driving Mode is only available on Android 12 and later.


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