If you’ve ever got an Uber and had a peak at which navigation app they were using, chances are you’d have seen Waze. It’s an app most drivers swear by, and it uses community-based information on accidents, delays and other hazards to adapt and change routes in real-time. Although it’s owned by Google, the search giant has kept Google Maps, Android Auto and Waze very separate – well, until this week.
In blog post this week, Waze announced it would now be available on Android Auto, and it’s amazing it took this long, to be honest. Originally founded in Tel Aviv in 2006, Waze was acquired by Google in 2013 after a bidding war with Apple and Facebook – and ever since then we’ve been waiting to see how the search giant could get the most out of its £837 million investment. Now we know.
According to the Telegraph, Android Auto compatibility was the thing most requested by its 85 million users – and it’s pretty easy to add it to Google’s car app, too. All you need to do is make sure the latest version of Waze is installed on your smartphone, and after that you’ll be able to select it as a Navigation app from the footer of the Android Auto screen.
After that, Waze on Android Auto operates in the same way to the normal app, so you’ll be able to use voice commands and notify others of hazards and delays.
While it’s a pretty subtle update, it may have some tough implications for Apple CarPlay. Apple Maps is still quite unreliable – for me at least – and it means I always use the car’s sat-nav or Google Maps when I’m in a CarPlay compatible vehicle. Android Auto and Waze is clearly a superior solution to CarPlay right now – and Apple will need to react before its car app loses more momentum.