A year after Android Auto was announced with 30 automakers committed to bring it to market, Hyundai has become the first automaker to integrate Google’s smartphone-connected infotainment takeover into its cars. Well, car. Singular.
Starting today, the 2015 Hyundai Sonata is the first car that can use Android Auto. Owners of the Sonata with the navigation package can go to dealers to have the upgrade installed, and this summer Sonata drivers can download the software at home and install it themselves.
Android Auto brings Google Maps navigation, voice-messaging, calling, voice search, Google Now, and a handful of music and podcast apps to cars, ditching the antiquated, overly complex system installed from the factory. But right now, it’s only available on this lone Sonata (and one aftermarket system), and only for Android smartphone users running the latest version of the OS – Lollipop, which is on around 10 percent of all Android devices.
Hyundai says a larger roll-out of Android Auto will take place later this year, and other automakers are expected to announce more definitive timelines this week during Google’s developer conference.