Google Maps Introduces Real-Time Battery Range Info For EV Drivers


Google Maps and Android Auto Integration

Google has unveiled a new feature at CES 2024 that will provide real-time battery information to electric vehicle (EV) drivers using Google Maps. This feature is integrated with Android Auto, a secondary interface that wirelessly communicates and projects features such as navigation, media, and messaging from an Android-based smartphone to the vehicle display. Guemmy Kim, director of Product and User Experience for Android for Cars, announced this development in a blog post on Tuesday.

Key Takeaway

Google Maps, in collaboration with Android Auto, is now providing real-time battery information to EV drivers, offering enhanced navigation features and trip planning capabilities. This integration is initially available on Ford vehicles and will expand to include more EV brands in the future.

  • Real-time Battery Information
  • Integration with Android Auto
  • Enhanced Navigation Features

While most modern EVs offer drivers information on their state of charge, the integration with navigation has not always been readily available or clear. Android Auto bypasses the in-car navigation system and instead displays Google Maps. When an EV driver enters a destination into Google Maps, the feature will provide an estimated battery level upon arrival, suggest charging stops along the way, and share the duration of charging based on the vehicle’s specifications.

Initial Rollout and Future Expansion

The new Android Auto feature will be initially available on Ford Mustang Mach-E and F-150 Lightning. Google has announced that more EV brands will follow in the coming months, making this feature accessible to a wider range of electric vehicle users.

Google Built-In: Additional Features

In addition to the integration with Android Auto, Google has also introduced new trip planning capabilities, the Chrome browser, and the Weather Channel app to Google built-in. Google built-in is an automotive services product embedded into the vehicle itself, offered in vehicles with an Android Automotive operating system. This operating system, based on Google's open source mobile platform, includes Google apps and services such as Google Assistant, Google Maps, and the Google Play Store, as well as third-party apps like Spotify.

  • Trip Planning Capabilities
  • Chrome Browser Integration
  • Expanded App Offerings

Google has collaborated with automakers to natively incorporate the Android OS into their vehicles. Polestar and Volvo were among the first automakers to have Google built-in, and Nissan, Ford, Lincoln, and Porsche are expected to roll out this feature in the near future.

Enhanced Connectivity and Entertainment

Starting today, drivers of vehicles with Google built-in can send their planned trips from Google Maps directly to their car, regardless of whether they are using Android or iOS smartphones. Additionally, Google has introduced the Chrome browser to select Polestar and Volvo cars in beta, with plans to expand this feature to other vehicles with Google built-in later this year. The browser is designed for use when the vehicle is parked, particularly for EVs during charging.

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