At the moment, Audi’s MMI infotainment system is one of the best on the market. But a lot of what makes it so great actually has to do with Google. While many cars, especially German ones, have intuitive infotainment systems, Audi’s navigation system is what sets it apart. Using Google Maps and even Google Earth, Audi’s nav is the easiest to use, most accurate and best looking system on the market. Combine that with Audi’s Virtual Cockpit and you get an incredible technological experience. Though, it seems Audi wants to take that partnership even further. While the current MMI is great, future systems could use Google’s Android tech.
Not to be confused with Android Auto, which is currently in many automotive systems, Audi will use Android tech to help connect with smartphones and Google more seamlessly. This new Android-based system could help control every aspect of the car’s interior, connectivity and HVAC systems. So rather than Android Auto, which just mirrors an Android smartphone onto the MMI screen, this would be a fully-integrated system.
It’s actually quite clever that Audi wants to go this far with Google and Android. Smartphones are becoming so much more important in our everyday lives that it makes sense to offer as much connectivity as possible. It’s also interesting, as most of its competitors are more Apple-focused. BMW and Mercedes-Benz are far more Apple-oriented than Android and BMW doesn’t even offer Android Auto. So it’s interesting to see Audi side with Google.
When Audi debuted its Q8 Concept, the interior had a Google-based system to show off. It featured a Google Assistant, replacing the traditional voice controls, that could help control every aspect of the car, not just phone-related. While the navigation system defaulted to HERE, which was acquired by Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz together from Nokia, the default system can be switched to Google Maps. And that’s really what Google is all about, the idea to change and customize your own experience and use the apps you want. So it’s nice that Audi will allow customers to choose.
This new system probably won’t be seen until the Audi Q8 in a couple of years but we’re excited to know that Audi is working further with Google, as the two have already done great things together.