Until now, the Android Auto experience in cars has been kind of lackluster. Although the cards based layout made sense, it was not the most intuitive in a driving environment. Google is now redesigning most of the UI elements to provide a better experience.
Previously, navigating through the old interface required a lot of taps in submenus and drop down menus. The new redesign hopes to reduce this by having as much information as possible in one glance. Ease of access takes the main stage.
One of the biggest change is in how the home screen looks. The familiar card stack layout is now gone and in comes app icons. Google also adds a new dynamic navigation bar at the bottom. This bar houses a quick action tap to the assistant and a button for a dedicated notifications page. All the alerts that come in are present here and the driver can easily look and respond to them.
The dynamic navigation bar is another nifty feature which changes according to the screen on the foreground. While the focus is on a navigation app, a background app like a music player can display quick function actions like pause and next in this bar. It also includes a button to take the user to the app. Similarly, if the focus is on a music player app is in the front, turn by turn navigation comes up in the bar. This helps in simplifying the user experience a lot.
Google is also changing the theme of the android auto display to a darker layout to match the interiors of most cars. This also helps in reducing the strain of a bright display during night drives. The new update will roll out by summer in the form of an OTA app update.