Toyota is hurrying to catch up to emerging infotainment technology. In its newest models, Toyota has introduced Apple CarPlay much to the joy of Apple users. However, the 43% of Americans with Android devices were left out in the cold to use Toyota's low-rated Scout Nav and a list of apps Toyota is strangely shrinking.
Globally, Apple has less than 25% market share. It has always seemed a bit strange that Toyota, no stranger to technology, was behind the times with regard to smartphone tech. A new report by Bloomberg now gives hope to we Android device users who also love Toyota products.
Bloomberg cites "a person familiar with the matter" who says that Toyota will move to integrate the technology that most of its peers have included now for the better part of a decade. Officially, we are still waiting to hear from both Toyota and Google and Alphabet (the makers of Android software). Bloomberg says that when they asked about the issue, "A Toyota spokesperson said that the carmaker acknowledges demand for Android Auto and that direct connection is something the company is considering, declining to comment beyond that. Google declined to comment." That mirrors the responses we have also heard at Torque News from Toyota on this important issue.
For those wondering why this matters, let us quickly list out a few things that an Android Auto-equipped vehicle can offer:
- Zero cost Navigation - Using Google Maps. A driver can view Google Maps on the vehicle's infotainment screen and interact with it directly.
- Waze - This helps with traffic and also tells you where the po po are hiding.
- Pandora - A direct connection to Pandora was recently lost by Toyota. That's a problem that Android Auto will fix and it will enable full functionality. That includes station lists and thumbs up and down.
For those who want more background on the broader subject of Toyota and infotainment, we offer these prior stories as reference points:
- Toyota's Scout Navigation App vs. Android Auto and Apple Car Play
- Toyota's Infotainment Woes Mount - Drops Pandora Integration Along With Other Popular Apps
- Toyota Adds Apple Car Play To One New 2019 Model, But What About Android Auto?
Image courtesy of Chevrolet (seriously)