What you need to know about Android Auto wireless adapters

What you need to know about Android Auto wireless adapters

Tech Highlights:

  • As such, a trend has emerged to offer adapters that can take over a car’s USB port and connect to your phone wirelessly. This was originally done through unofficial means, but Google has actually officially licensed at least one product to support the functionality. There are currently three adapters that can add wireless Android Auto to your car. The first one that was released was AAWireless, which is developed by a small team and was brought to the market on the back of crowdfunding. The simple adapter has a detachable cable that connects to your car and projects wireless Android Auto to your car. It has a companion app that can deliver firmware updates, assist with pairing, and make more advanced tweaks to the experience if you opt to do so. AAWireless is the jack-of-all-trades in this comparison, offering a simple setup with more under the hood.

  • Wireless Although Android Auto is really useful, it is still uncommon to discover this technology incorporated into your vehicle. However, a simple wireless Android Auto adapter makes adding the feature relatively simple – here are some of the most often asked questions regarding the goods. Android Auto is usually utilised in a wired configuration, with a cable connecting your phone to your car. This connection steadily charges your phone while sending data to the car, allowing Android Auto to appear on the infotainment screen. The wired version of Android Auto is now standard in almost every new vehicle, but the wireless version has yet to catch up.

The Motorola MA1, meanwhile, is the only product officially licensed to deliver wireless Android Auto to vehicles. It has a built-in USB-A connection and works without any apps. Just pair over Bluetooth and the rest is handled as if you were wired to the car. The focus of the product is simplicity, a goal it certainly reaches. MA1 has been incredibly popular among customers, and that’s led to the $90 wireless Android Auto dongle being completely out of stock at Amazon and Target for weeks. You can try your luck with alerts, but this is a hard device to get your hands on.

Sadly, the answer to that is no. Your car must have the wired version of Android Auto, whether officially through the built-in infotainment system or through a head unit, to enable the connection wirelessly. These adapters only ditch the cable requirement. Will my phone work with a wireless Android Auto adapter? Generally speaking, the vast majority of phones released in the past three to four years will work with a wireless Android Auto adapter. The exact requirements are as follows.

There’s also another wireless Android Auto adapter that was born out of crowdfunding, Carsifi. This dongle is similar to AAWireless in that it has a companion app for advanced functions and updates, but has one stand-out feature in a quick switch button that allows you to easily switch the phone that the dongle connects to. We’ve been using Carsifi for a little bit at this point, with a review forthcoming, but the $90 dongle seems like a solid option so far. It can be purchased through Indiegogo, typically shipping within a month. One of the biggest questions we often see about wireless Android Auto adapters is if they will add Android Auto to a vehicle that didn’t already have it.

Some owners of wireless Android Auto adapters have also noted that connections will tend to drop in certain areas. These devices do use 5GHz Wi-Fi Direct to transfer data between your phone and the adapter, so interference is certainly possible in some areas, though we wouldn’t say it’s particularly likely or common for most uses.

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