Google Assistant Driving Mode is gaining wide release in the United States, perhaps to introduce the beginning of the end of Android Auto…
Last summer, Google made it known that it planned to retire its standalone Android Auto app and replace it with Google Assistant Driving Mode. Then, just over a year later, XDA Developers reported some of its readers spotted it in the wild. Thereafter, it popped up alongside a new navigation interface within Google Maps. Now, it’s showing up widely in the United States and it’s possible to access it without having to wait for it to show up on its own.
Google Assistant Driving Mode Rolls Out Widely in the US
To experience the new Google Assistant Driving Mode, just launch Google Assistant settings. (The simplest way is to simply ask Google to open Assistant settings.) Once the menu appears, just look for Getting Around and scroll down to Driving Mode, then toggle it on to enable Google Assistant Driving Mode. Once activated, open Google Maps or say to Assistant “Let’s Drive,” set a destination, and voila!
The new interface places a fixed navigation bar to the bottom of the screen. Just above it are the media controls and details, with Maps sitting atop. Overall, it’s very much a marriage of Android Auto and Google Maps. But, there are some key differences. For instance, there’s no temperature display. But, it does show the top Android toolbar, which includes displaying the time, alarms, network/WiFi, battery, et cetera.