Yesterday, Google announced that Waze had finally been made compatible with Android Auto. As a Waze user, I was pretty excited to hear this, and quickly installed Android Auto on my smartphone to give it a go. (I do not have an Android Auto compatible headunit in my vehicle.) Well, it turns out Waze doesn’t work with Android Auto on smartphones – only on headunits in vehicles. Lame.
A user on Reddit suggested using another app as an alternative to Android Auto, called Drivemode.
I installed the app just this morning, and it did not take long at all to see just how brilliant this app is. The UI is so perfect for driving, and I place it’s ease of use (and therefore safer to use) than Android Auto on a smartphone. The UI is gorgeous and colourful. Everything you do gives an audio feedback so you can use your touch with your ears and not your eyes.
My favourite feature has to be Drivemode’s method of controlling your music. In my case, I can have Waze on the screen, but with a simple flick from the left-side of the screen to the bottom, Drivemode opens a transparent overlay. On this overlay, you touch anywhere to play/pause the music, swipe left or right to advance or go to the prior track, and even swipe up and down for volume control.
In fact, through Drivemode’s UI, it’s really all about swiping up, down, left, or right, and being able to tap anywhere on the screen. No need to aim for buttons, big or small.
When it comes to communication, I asked my wife to send me a text via Telegram while we drove to work. Sure enough, Drivemode caught the incoming text, paused the music, and read it to us. Nice!
If you haven’t tried this app already, I really suggest giving it a go! It’s a free app available in the Google Play store!