Google Finally Brings Waze Crowdsourced Navigation App To Android Auto

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If you are a fan of Google’s crowdsourced Waze navigation app and have a vehicle that supports Android Auto, you have up to this point been able to pair the two together. That, however, all changes today. Google has just released the Android Auto version of Waze to Google Play, meaning that you will be able to enjoy most of the fruits of the regular smartphone app.

When you fire up Waze for Android Auto, the interface should be instantly familiar, but Google has made some changes to make the app less distraction for drivers (something that regulators and automakers have been harping on with system like Android Auto and CarPlay). For starters, you won’t be able to partake in map chat and gas prices have been ripped out of this version of the app.

In addition, you won’t see ads displayed in the mapping interface while you’re stopped at a traffic light or stop sign (which is probably a plus for some people). And obviously, Google locks out the ability to type while you’re driving — you must be stopped to do this.

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However, much of the core functionality that keep people coming back to Waze over competing solutions like Google Maps, like incident/hazard reporting, are right at your fingertips. That also means that you will be alerted to the state trooper that is clocking motorists from the highway onramp (as long as someone has already reported him/her). This functionality has caught a lot of flak from law enforcement officers over the years, but is a big boon to motorists.

So far, it seems as though this is a mostly feature-intact port of Waze for Android Auto, and Google is committed to improving it with future releases. In fact, some missing functionality — including the speed limit indicator — are expected to return in future updates.

While Waze has finally made it to Android Auto, don’t expect to ever see it arrive for CarPlay. Apple is much more restrictive when it comes to allowing third-party mapping applications into its heavily curated infotainment ecosystem.