After refusing to do so for some time, Toyota has apparently decided to add Android Auto connectivity to its vehicles.
A person familiar with the matter told Bloomberg that Toyota has finally put aside its safety and security concerns with Android Auto. Consequently, Android users will soon be able to connect their devices in new Toyotas, well after the automaker rolled out support for Apple CarPlay in January.
A company spokesperson said the automaker is aware of demand for Android Auto and that the company was considering implementing the technology. However, they declined to comment beyond that. Google has also declined to comment on the matter.
Nevertheless, inside sources suggest that an announcement could arrive as soon as October.
Android owners have only been able to interact with their devices on a Toyota’s infotainment system through the Ford-developed SmartDeviceLink, which controls and limits what is displayed on the screen. It’s a hassle and a system that never should have been needed if Toyota was an early adopter of Android Auto.
Speaking as recently as April about its refusal to add Android Auto, the executive program manager for the Toyota Avalon, Mark DeJongh, said it was being done in the interest of customers.
“We wanted to protect our customers’ privacy. We strongly believe in our stance and in what we’re doing.”
In the years since Apple CarPlay and Android Auto were introduced, the two have become a valuable selling point for dozens of new vehicles. The technology was met with some resistance from certain manufacturers, including from Porsche, but is now widespread across the industry.
Toyota Corolla Hatchback infotainment with Apple CarPlay pictured