Google is bringing Chrome to cars, even more EV features to Maps

Android Auto interface showing EV charging times.

Google is bringing a great combination of features to Android Auto and cars with Google built-in, particularly for those who drive an EV.

Google Maps is adding more EV-centric features for those who use Android Auto from their connected phone. Starting with the Ford F-150 Lightning and Mach-E, you’ll now see information on expected state of charge on arrival to your destination, as well as charging station locations and expected charging times for longer trips. This is a feature that’s been available for EVs running Google built-in (aka Android Automotive), and in my experience, it’s extremely helpful and helps alleviate charging anxiety. It’s wonderful to see this brought to the much wider-reaching Android Auto version of Maps, and I hope it expands to more cars soon.

Google Chrome browser running on Android Automotive in a car.

If you have a car with a Google built-in infotainment system, there’s even more in store for your in-car experience. Google is bringing a full-blown Chrome browser to cars, which will roll out in beta starting with Polestar and Volvo, so you can browse while you’re parked (or more likely, charging) — something that’s been available for a long time and very popular in Teslas. Google’s also expanding its media offerings with PBS Kids and Crunchyroll, and there’s also a new weather experience from The Weather Channel that includes forecasts, alerts, and radar.

Google is also adding a new “send to car” button to the Google Maps app on phones, making it easy to plan out a trip before you leave and have it waiting for you when you get in your car. It’s just yet another feature that makes the Google built-in experience appealing. Google built-in is coming to even more cars soon, with Nissan, Ford and Lincoln launching more models with the software suite in 2024.

Courtesy by: Digital Trends

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