A developer managed to get Android Auto working in Tesla vehicles through the web browser and an app on Google Play.
One of the most requested features by Tesla owners is enabling phone mirroring apps like Android Auto and Apple Carplay.
At one point, CEO Elon Musk said that Tesla was working on phone projection apps, but as is sometimes the case, it hasn’t happened. The automaker is instead investing in a closed system where it controls the entire user interface and experience.
Developer AAWireless has been teasing a workaround using Tesla’s web browser, and just released it: TeslAA – Android Auto over Tesla Browser. 9to5Google detailed the early version of the product in June
Tesla owners can simply download the app, which costs $6.50, and put it to use. Users connect their phone to their car through Bluetooth, connect the Tesla WiFi to the phone’s hotspot, and then go to androidwheels.com on your in-car web browser.
This Android Auto implementation enables users to display apps like Google Maps or Waze directly on their Tesla’s center display.
The app is still in beta, but it seems like it is working fairly well:
The developer did warn of some known issues before.
- When / after switching to reverse the video can become unresponsive. A refresh of the page will fix this.
- The app uses native FFMPEG binary on the phone side, which on some occasions can die in the background. This will not happen during the drive, more like during the setup or if you close the browser of Tesla many times then switch back to it. Sadly this needs the TeslAA Service to be stopped and restarted.
- Performance depends on the phone and on the Tesla browser as well. Under-powered phones might not be able to stream correctly in 720p.
- Wireless charging when using AA can lead to phone overheating (happens on my OnePlus 8 Pro), I can avoid this by using a wired charger (a bit unfortunate, but this is again phone dependant).
- If you lose mobile phone signal for a long time, Telsa might decide to disconnect from the WiFi, and you won’t be able to reconnect untill you’re back in an area with mobile coverage.
It looks like it is working fairly well, but I’ll try it myself to make sure and report back.
I am actually a fan of Tesla’s user interface and I’ve never been one of those Tesla owners calling for Android Auto/Apple Carplay integration, but I do acknowledge that there are limitations to its navigation system, which gave me some trouble just last weekend.
I am willing to give it a try.
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