While there are many smartphones apps for absolutely everything these days… Then why can't we have them for driving (in cars)? Can't we take the things we do on our smartphones to our cars? For instance, replying a message on WhatsApp, putting a mail to our boss or enjoy the recorded cute tantrums of our kids, etc. Well, it's yes for everything. You can achieve it through 'Android Auto' which is the modified version of Android OS designed to use in the car's infotainment system.
The only need is to have a compatible car and a smartphone running Android 5.0 Lollipop and above installed with 'Android Auto' app. Just launch the app and plug in your smartphone to the car's dashboard via USB port or pair it with Bluetooth. From there, all your mobile's notifications, messages, email alerts, music apps, etc., can be streamed on to your car (dashboard) and everything can be accessed just with simple voice commands (turn on voice recognition technology (Google Assistant) on your car's steering) without taking your eyes off the road.
In addition to these, you can even use third-party apps that you use on smartphones.. but they are a bit tweaked. So, here are the apps that you need not stop yourselves from using them even while driving cars!
Unlike on smartphones, you need not type long messages while driving your cars. Just say 'OK Google' and say out to whom (contact) you want to send the message. Eg: "Message Cody White on Whatsapp." Then the built-in voice system asks you to speak out the message and once you're done, it repeats your to-be-sent message and asks your confirmation before sending it. You can either cancel out or change the message!
In case of sending replies, you can just say 'reply' and the reply will automatically be for the last message you have received.
You can even enjoy other popular messengers like Facebook Messenger, Telegram, etc.
Not just on smartphones, Spotify works for cars as well. All you need is to log in to the app on your Android device and connect it to the car's Android Auto compatible stereo via USB cable. Much like smartphones, you can stream hundreds of tracks according to the genre, download songs and listen while data is off through Spotify premium subscription as well.
People who prefer to listen to the radio while driving cars can go for myTuner Radio where you can stream 50000 plus radio stations available across more than 200 countries and keep yourself updated. The app's flexible search tool lets users stream content by country, genre (sports, news, comedy), city, etc. Other than these, users can also set their favourite station as an alarm to wake them up, listen to and download thousands of podcasts, sleep timer to close the app automatically, etc.
Besides these, you can also use TuneIn, Scanner radio, Urban hit, iHeart Radio, etc.
To resume the story in your cars from the point you left reading at your home, 'Audible books' app best fits the bill. It has got a huge library of audio books from different genres like crime, thriller, religious, humour, etc., and everything is being read aloud to ease your driving! Users can even download books and listen offline.
You have got NPR One, MLB At Bat and a host of other options to serve the purpose.
ICQ - Free Video Chat & Calls, Text Messenger
If you are looking out to have video chatting in cars, then Android Auto has the support to ICQ Video calls and Chat. Besides offering high-quality video calling facility, it let users convert Speech to text for voice messages, synchronise chats across all devices, unlimited participants in the group video calling, etc. To turn your conversation more funny, you have got a bunch of 3D animated masks and facility to create your own stickers as well.
Not only ICQ Video calls and Chat, but Skype is also another well-liked app compatible with Android Auto.
Waze is one of the popular compatible navigation apps which lets you know the happenings on the road ahead. Beside receiving audio and visual alerts about the traffic congestion and hazards on your chosen route, the app also suggests alternative routes to avoid traffic, warn when we go over speed, cheapest gas stations on the route, gives access to music apps to enjoy your favourite tracks, etc. You can even join the communities and connect to fellow riders and seek help in an emergency.
Google Maps is the other alternative you can try.
(Image courtesy: Waze, FB, Google play store)