Daily Archives: December 16, 2012

Put your phone into ‘car mode’ with these dashboard apps

Sadly, Android's original Car Home app is incompatible with most modern versions of the OS.

(Credit: Google)

My first Android phone, the original Motorola Droid, was one of the first phones to debut Google Maps Navigation. Now, Google knew that this feature would get drivers interested in using their Android phones in the car and that the tiny virtual buttons and shortcuts that worked well when the device was handheld wouldn’t cut it behind the wheel. So, when users popped their Droids into their car docks, they were presented with a simplified interface with large shortcut buttons to car-centric apps, designed for safer use while driving.

Smartphones have come a long way since I retired my Droid, but–with the exception of a few devices with customized OSes–the Car Home feature has largely disappeared from newer Android phones. In a time where drivers are more concerned than ever about distraction behind the wheel, this is a shame.

Here’s where the third-party steps in to help. We’ve rounded up a collection of our favorite dashboard apps that closely replicate (and in many cases, exceed) the functionally of that old Car Home app for both Android. We… [Read more]


Car Tech: An automotive blog from CNET