Google first introduced Android Auto, its vehicle-based Android platform, at Google I/O in June. The company has now released its APIs to developers to build Auto-enabled apps for audio and messaging.
"For users, this means they simply connect their Android handheld to a compatible vehicle and begin utilizing a car-optimized Android experience that works with the car’s head unit display, steering wheel buttons, and more," says product manager Daniel Holle. "For developers, the APIs and UX guidelines make it easy to provide a simple way for users to get the information they need while on the road. As an added bonus, the Android Auto APIs let developers easily extend their existing apps targeting Android 5.0 (API level 21) or higher to work in the car without having to worry about vehicle-specific hardware differences. This gives developers wide reach across manufacturers, model and regions, by just developing with one set of APIs and UX standards."
For now, developers can only build audio and messaging apps. Audio apps should expose content for users to browse and allow audio playback from the car. This is for content like music, news, and podcasts. Messaging apps can receive incoming notifications, read messages aloud, and send replies via voice.
"It’s important to note that while the APIs are available today, apps extended with Android Auto cannot be published quite yet," says Holle. "More app categories will be supported in the future, providing more opportunities for developers and drivers of Android Auto."
There's a starter guide here.
Image via YouTube