Porsche recently made a big announcement: it’s finally adding Android Auto to most of its upcoming models. That news may surprise some people, not because they didn’t expect Porsche to have Android Auto, but because they thought it was already there. So, what’s the story with Porsche and Android Auto? We dug around to find out.
What is Android Auto?
Android Auto, a program available in all car models, makes it easy to integrate your Android phone into your driving life. It allows you to connect your smartphone to your car’s infotainment system, making it easy to use many of your favorite apps in your car.
In an Android Auto-compatible car, you can play your favorite songs, send voice-to-text messages, get directions to your destination, and more. Most importantly, you can use all of these features hands-free, which greatly improves your safety on the road, not to mention the safety of those around you.
Getting started using Android Auto is easy. All you have to do is say “Hey Google” and you’re on your way to completing the task you want to complete, explains Android.
Here’s Why Porsche Didn’t Offer Android Auto Integration
It’s somewhat surprising that the German automaker has only recently begun introducing Android Auto integration into many of its models. What was the delay? While there have been rumors that Porsche was trying to make its cars look more exclusive or block certain features, according to a report, it boiled down to an even simpler explanation: a conflict between the manufacturer and Google, owner of Android Auto.
According to Autoevolution, Porsche originally refused to enter into an agreement with Google to use Android Auto, because Google demanded that Porsche transfer data from its drivers that the automaker considered confidential. The information collected would include throttle position, oil and coolant temperature, engine speed and more. The theory is that Google would have used the data to help the tech giant develop an autonomous vehicle.
These new models include the phone integration technical function
What’s interesting is that even now that Porsche has started to include Android Auto in its lineup, the feature won’t necessarily be available in all models.
Porsche’s sixth-generation infotainment system, known as PCM 6.0, has been or will be introduced in select 2022 models. According to Car and Driver, the automaker began introducing the new infotainment system in the 911, but then planned to expand to other vehicles. Other Porsche models that will include PCM 6.0 and Android Auto include the Cayenne, Taycan and Panamera.
Certain Porsche models, however, will remain without Android Auto – a fact that is sure to frustrate some potential buyers. (As one annoyed customer on Rennlist wrote before the release of PCM 6.0: “Hey Porsche…more people on this planet bought Android instead of Apple. Wake up!”) Models that will continue without Android Auto include the 718 Cayman, Boxster and Macan. So anyone who wants to connect their smartphone to their Porsche via Android Auto will want to avoid those models.
Of course, the automaker focuses on the positives: access to Android Auto that consumers have been looking for for a while. As Porsche put it in a recent press release, the PCM 6.0 update makes the infotainment system “more versatile, more intuitive, [and] more intelligent.”
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