Google to focus on cars with next Android version
Google is laying the groundwork for a version of Android that would be built directly into cars, allowing drivers to enjoy all the benefits of the internet without even plugging in their smartphones.
The move is a major step up from Google's current Android Auto software, which comes with the latest version of its smartphone operating system and requires a phone to be plugged into a compatible car with a built-in screen to access streaming music, maps and other apps.
Google, however, has never provided details or a timeframe for its long-term plan to put Android Auto directly into cars. The company now plans to do so when it rolls out the next version of its operating system, dubbed Android M, expected in a year or so, two people with knowledge of the matter said.
If successful, Android would become the standard system powering a car's entertainment and navigation features, solidifying Google's position in a new market where it is competing with arch-rival Apple. Google could also potentially access the valuable trove of data collected by a vehicle.