Just about a week after the stable rollout of Android Auto 7.8, Google has begun beta testing Android Auto 7.9. The new version of the company’s driving companion app is now available to users who have enrolled in the app’s beta program. Not all beta testers may get it right away, though. If you’re among the lucky ones, you should get an update for the Android Auto app on the Google Play Store.
Unfortunately, Google once again refrains from telling what’s unchanging with version 7.9 of its driving companion app (via). That’s an annoying habit the company has developed. It doesn’t supply a changelog for Android Auto updates, whether it’s the beta build or the stable release. Users are on their own to find what’s new.
As Android Auto 7.9 is just rolling out to beta testers, it could take a few days before users start noticing any changes. We will let you know if there are any notable user-facing changes here. Even if there aren’t any, we hope Google has quashed some bugs with this release. Android Auto has had plenty of problems lately, from compatibility issues on the Pixel 6 and Galaxy S22 smartphones to problems with calls initiated via Google Assistant. It’d be nice if the company takes care of a few with version 7.9.
Of course, the Coolwalk redesign is pending too. Announced at Google I/O 2022 in May, this redesign brings a split-screen mode that lets you have the navigation instructions, messages, and media controls on the screen all at once. It also allows the app to automatically adapt to the display of your Android Auto-compatible vehicle. While Android Auto 7.9 doesn’t see this redesign, there’s a possibility that preparations are going on behind the scenes.
Google is still rolling out Android Auto 7.8
Android Auto 7.9 may have entered public testing but some users have yet to receive version 7.8 in the stable channel. The rollout began last week, sans the changelog, as usual. It could take a few more weeks before everyone gets the update. That’s how Google handles these updates. They don’t roll out at the same pace to everyone. By the time some people receive Android Auto 7.8, stable version 7.9 may have already reached some others.
Nonetheless, you can click the button below to download the latest version available to you from the Google Play Store. Note that Google has pulled the plug on the phone version of Android Auto. It now only works on car screens. The company wants you to use Google Assistant Driving Mode on your phone if your car lacks a display.