Google is not much about reinventing the wheel, but more about creating a wheel in beta, then creating another wheel and moving the first wheel to the second, and then creating a third wheel under another name and abandoning it later. Something similar has happened with Android Auto and the result is a mess with which not even Google is clear.

On some mobiles There is no official way to enter Android Auto settings, after Google has “capped” the one used in this case. The question of why this was necessary – or recommended – is up in the air, but while we think about an answer, we will tell you how you can access the Android Auto settings if you don’t have them on your mobile either.

Dude, where are my settings?

The history of Android Auto implementation is long and boring, so let’s summarize. Initially Android Auto was an application that could be used on your mobile or in the car and worked the same as any other application: downloaded from Google Play and accessible from the app drawerlike another application.

This changed when Google decided to end Android Auto for phonesoffering us instead an insufficient Google Assistant driving mode that was soon degraded and probably won’t take much longer to disappear.

The new versions of Android They include Android Auto integrated as part of their settings, but it doesn’t happen like that in the old ones, those where Android Auto initially worked as an application on the phone. In these cases, the application continued to show its icon in the application drawer and could be opened on our own. For example, from your Google Play listing or your information view.


On phones with a recent version of Android, Android Auto is integrated into the settings (although in different places on different layers). The easiest way to find it is to use the settings finder.

Thus, the way to access Android Auto settings was until recently fragmented between mobile phones with recent versions of Android (Android 12 and later) and older ones. On modern phones, Android Auto appears in the phone settings and the Android Auto app can’t open on its own. Not in the old ones: in them, the Android Auto application can be opened, but it is not in the settings.

Now, at some point in the last few weeks Google has removed the option to open the Android Auto app on all mobiles, whether from Google Play, the application drawer or from the application’s system information. The app simply cannot be opened.


Android Auto app can no longer open

This means that on phones that do not have Android Auto in their settings (something common on phones with “old” versions of Android in which Android Auto still works), There is no way to access the settings without doing tricks. Well played, Google.

What’s more, to make it even more irritating, not even one of the tricks works. One of my favorite ways to open Android Auto settings is to search for “Android Auto” on Google Play, which displays a special banner at the top. This banner does not appear on old mobile phones.


Do you want to configure Android Auto? So you stand yourself. On modern phones, a link called “Go to Android Auto settings” appears here.

Luckily, there is a trick that still works and that will allow you to open the Android Auto settings even if you don’t have your phone connected to the car at that moment: creating a shortcut to the adjustments activity.

You can do this with Nova Launcher or a specialized app like Activity Launcher. We explain the process in detail in this article, but the summary is quite simple: create an Activity widget (belonging to Nova Launcher) and, after displaying Android Auto, choose Settings. With this you can create an icon on your home screen that directly opens the Android Auto settings.


Steps to create a shortcut to Android Auto settings with Nova Launcher

If you don’t use Nova Launcherthe process is practically the same with Activity Launcher and you will create a shortcut that you can place on any launcher that supports widgets.

The big question is not so much why it has removed access to settings on old phones, but rather why it insists on not showing Android Auto in the application drawer and, yet, that we open the application.

In Android | Google Maps is history on my Android Auto, now I use an alternative that even works offline