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What the state of manufacturers’ Android integration is:
Pretty much every automobile manufacturer offers infotainment units that are capable of basic bluetooth pairing with both Apple and Android devices. Once paired, any music playing on your phone should come out through the vehicle's speakers, and depending on the vehicle you may be able to use the steering wheel audio controls and the artist and track name may appear on a screen. Some systems, such as Ford Sync and Chrysler Uconnect add a bit of additional functionality such as displaying turn by turn directions or adding voice control, but no full screen mirroring. Mercedes, Mazda, and KIA showcased similar upcoming systems that more deeply interact with Android devices, but which aren't yet available. Audi vehicles seem to be the most integrated; they include a phone box, a special cubbyhole for your phone engineered to provide the best possible reception and also wireless charging. Audi also showed an Android tablet, designed (with crash worthiness in mind) for controlling different aspects of the car from the passenger seats, or even remotely.
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Why the state of manufacturers’ Android integration is important:
Last year more Android phones were sold than Apple phones, and consumers expect their devices to just work with whatever vehicle they are driving. While this has been the case for Apple phones many auto companies are only now including advanced Android support. With technology being so important to many consumers the lack of Android integration might be enough to make a potential buyer skip the infotainment or navigation options, or even move on to a different vehicle.
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What Autobytel thinks about the state of manufacturers’ Android integration:
With aftermarket headunits (even those by smaller companies) supporting full Android integration including screen mirroring, it’s hard to understand why automobile manufacturers have taken so long to implement the features. They are slowly coming aboard however, and based on what we saw at CES most manufacturers should have fully featured Android compatible systems within the next year or so. Even then, we don't know whether they will be able to match the pricing or features of aftermarket headunits.
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