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Old 5th August 2020, 13:15   #1
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Default Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi

Android Auto has been a big boon since it's advent. But the need to connect it via cable is a pain point. And most of us always wished if it could function wireless. Off late there are many head units like Kenwood etc that supports AA wirelessly. For that, the car should have an inbuilt wifi. However many cars doesn't have it. My car(Seltos) is no exception.

Since the time I learned about an adapter that makes apple car play go wireless, i've been on the look out for a work around that makes AA work wirelessly too. Related thread below.

https://www.team-bhp.com/forum/car-e...-page-2-a.html (CarPlay2Air.com: Convert wired Apple CarPlay to wireless. EDIT: Major disappointment (page 2))

I don't have the technical know-how to explain it in depth. This is what I learned and figured out after combing through the internet - xda forums and android community. It still needs a slave phone to be connected via USB cable. In that context, one can say it's not a totally wireless solution but your master phone is freed totally.

Prerequisites:

* Car's head unit that supports Android Auto (via cable)
* Master phone (your main phone)
* Slave phone (your spare android phone)
* XDA labs app.
* AA Gateway paid app.
* USB cable to connect your slave phone to car's USB media slot.

Let me warn you it's either a hit or miss. For me with bit of trial and error, it finally worked. With my car having wireless phone charger, I feel it's still worth the effort and investment as your master phone is free to be moved around with no cables attached.

Here's a step by step procedure which seems to be easy.

* Install Android Auto in your master phone.

* Install XDA labs app and AA Gateway app in your slave phone.

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https://labs.xda-developers.com/latest. You can login into xda app with Google account or create a new account.

*You'll find an app by the name AA Gateway in xda labs. It's a paid app at 0.99$. Buy the app and install it in slave phone. Don't open the app, just install it.

Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi-screenshot_20200805132832_whatsapp.jpg

Please note this is a risk(spending 70 odd Rs.) you're taking as there could be many things that could go wrong. I presume it's a negligible amount and one can go ahead keeping that in mind. Just taking an anticipatory bail here . In case it doesn't work for you, you can drop a mail to eborconi@b3itlabs.com for refund.

* Now go to android auto (master phone) settings in your android auto. I'm on android 10 with my Note9. Here you need to enable Developer options. Keep tapping on the text "version" under the " About " tab till the developer options open. You'll see a menu list appear on top right corner of the page. From the drop down list, enable " Start head unit server" and then exit from the app.

Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi-screenshot_20200805130102_whatsapp.jpg

Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi-screenshot_20200805135140_whatsapp.jpg

For some android versions, you need to click on "About" in AA and click on the "about android auto" option ten times for the developer option to open.

* Switch on mobile hotspot in your master phone and make the slave phone connect to it.This is how your slave phone would receive commands from master phone and slave phones apparently becomes a forwarder of command. This acts as a Wifi receiver for your car's head unit.

* Now connect your slave phone to the car's USB Media slot via cable. The phone will have a pop up to select Android Auto or AA Gateway. Select the latter. Make sure you've a good quality data cable.

* Your car's head unit would show Reading USB media and then will show up the Android Auto Option. Voila ! You will see your master phone Android Auto connected to your car's head unit wirelessly. Please note there's no need to install Android Auto in your slave phone. Watch the you tube video below.

Few disadvantages as I see it.

* Your master phone should stay with hotspot on all the time.

* In my case, I have a Jio dongle which I've dedicatedly kept in my car for internet connectivity. With hotspot on, you can't connect to your Wifi dongle.

* Yet to test what happens if the network signal goes off in your master phone which means the slave phone will lose the pairing with master which is connected via hotspot.

This same set up could be made by using an android tv stick too as per few android forums. Need to try that out. That would be a big improvement upon this if it works out as slave phone goes out of picture. Instead what you've would be a stick that's slotted into the usb media socket.

Also if anyone is interested on this, find a short good quality USB cable and a resting place for your slave phone. That way the cable tangling around and all such mess up can be done away with. Image below shows my crude set up but does the job, need to improvise upon this stop gap measure. I keep my spare phone, dongle, cables etc in this pouch which saves a lot of space in the cubby holes. There are netted storage pouches available online, the ones we see in VAG cars, which can be fixed where these pouches are hanging.

Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi-20200805_172813.jpg

Few pictures after I connected it successfully.

Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi-img20200805wa0024.jpg

Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi-img20200805wa0020.jpg

Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi-img20200805wa0019.jpg

An you tube video which pretty much suggests the same steps I followed. Stumbled upon this after I had almost set it up



Quote:

FAQ 's and Known Issues as listed by developer.


Common problems, workaround:

- Latency & lag. This will be really down to the devices you are using. I have tested it with a MK808B Plus, it work’s ok most of the time but occasionally you will get the odd lag. I’ve also tested it with a Nexus 7 tablet, and there was no lag at all, so device does matter, as well as probably ROM.

- I get random disconnection. There can be 2 causes for this, one the USB connection fails between the car and the auxiliary device, or the Wifi fails between the phone and the auxiliary device. In my tests I saw a few Wifi disconnections without any reason on the MK808, but non on the Nexus. Changing the tethering option from WPA2 to Open did help with this.

- App is closed without error or reason. The app runs in a background process, with a minimal interaction with the foreground, some devices/OS will kill background apps. I saw this happening on Nokia and I saw this happening on OnePlus as well. Try disabling battery optimisation for AAGateWay, that might help.

- I just cannot get it to work… Try using a phone, that will at least give you some visual guidance. Make sure that your device connects to the phone Wifi hotspot, make sure that AA Headunit server is running on the phone (try to force stop Goolge Play Services, stop and restart the headunit server.

- Nothing happens on the master, using Wifi Launcher for HUR app. In this case, try to manually start the headunit server on the master, and manually turn on a hotspot, then reconfigure you're slave to connect to the masters hotspot (even if the master is running Pie or higher).
The links that helped me out.

https://www.xda-developers.com/wirel...android-phone/

https://forum.xda-developers.com/gen...813163/page268

https://www.xda-developers.com/wirel...unit-hack/amp/

https://forum.xda-developers.com/gen...GlMdHJMMGNQYWI.

Last edited by Bibendum90949 : 5th August 2020 at 18:17.
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Old 6th August 2020, 08:11   #2
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Default Re: Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi

Thread moved from the Assembly Line to the ICE Section. Thanks for sharing!

Going to homepage today
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Old 6th August 2020, 09:15   #3
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Default Re: Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi

Thanks for the detailed post. This is a very good alternative to wired connection with your primary phone.

Please keep the slave phone/pouch hidden somewhere. It sure can attract unwanted attention when you park out in the open/public parkings etc. The glimpse of a phone and wallet like pouch could be more than enough incentive for someone to break a window for it.
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Old 6th August 2020, 11:15   #4
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Default Re: Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi

Android Auto was wireless compatible even earlier. No? I used connect my Android device remotely and this is something I really miss on my apple device now. Carplay does not support wireless connection yet (there's a hack for this however, read this somewhere).
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Old 6th August 2020, 12:02   #5
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Default Re: Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bibendum90949 View Post
I'm on android 10 with my Note9.
How's your experience with Android Auto, both wired and wireless? The reason I ask is I have the same phone and on my Tiago, the wired AA experience is horrible.

There's noticeable lag when using multiple apps, like Spotify and Google Maps together. Use Spotify and Waze together and the device is better called dead. The audio alerts happen on time, but the visuals lag by more than a minute at times.

I've heard that it may not be the HU that's at fault here, but the device itself since the HU just projects the video from the device. Do you also experience lag with wired/wireless AA?
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Old 6th August 2020, 12:03   #6
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Default Re: Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi

Quote:
Originally Posted by vinair View Post
Android Auto was wireless compatible even earlier. No?
AA has wireless support, but the HU has to have support for it. Only a few new models comes with wireless AA supported HU.
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Old 6th August 2020, 12:35   #7
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Default Re: Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi

Quote:
Originally Posted by lightning535 View Post
Please keep the slave phone/pouch hidden somewhere. It sure can attract unwanted attention when you park out in the open/public parkings etc. The glimpse of a phone and wallet like pouch could be more than enough incentive for someone to break a window for it.
Thanks buddy. You're spot on. Yes I always keep them away upon parking in public places. A phone left unattended when we park out in the sun is a dangerous thing too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SuhairZain View Post
How's your experience with Android Auto, both wired and wireless? The reason I ask is I have the same phone and on my Tiago, the wired AA experience is horrible.

There's noticeable lag when using multiple apps, like Spotify and Google Maps together. Use Spotify and Waze together and the device is better called dead. The audio alerts happen on time, but the visuals lag by more than a minute at times.

I've heard that it may not be the HU that's at fault here, but the device itself since the HU just projects the video from the device. Do you also experience lag with wired/wireless AA?
Hello Suhair,

I've not faced any lag issues, it happened but very far and few in between. Earlier I experienced lot of disconnections with AA. Suspecting it to be a cable issue, I changed to another one though I was using an original Samsung cable before. Still the disconnection issue persisted. I had Gaana and Spotify both. I had lot of songs downloaded in Gaana for playing it offline(close to 3 GB or so). Hence I doubted that as a reason for disconnection and removed Gaana from the AA app lists. Now i've zero disconnection since then. Just see if it's a similar thing with Spotify in your case. Phone's RAM can be a factor too I suppose.

Regarding wireless experience, i've only set it up couple of days before and had only half an hour drive since then. It worked perfectly for that duration. Only a long journey or regular usage would give more indication on it's stability and any issues that may crop up.

Cheers,
bibendum.

Last edited by Bibendum90949 : 6th August 2020 at 12:38.
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Old 6th August 2020, 12:41   #8
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Default Re: Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi

With the increase in frequency of changing smart phones, I have accumulated quite a few spare phones . I've been thinking to try this wireless android auto for quite sometime and your post has given me with all the required information.

Thanks for the detailed post . Will give it a try and let you know the outcome.
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Old 6th August 2020, 12:44   #9
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Default Re: Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi

This will be a boon for frequent AA users without the hassle of plugging in the cable everytime. Thanks @Bibendum90949

This may not run in Fire TV Stick (cheapest I could find in Amazon Prime Sale today) probably as it doesn't seem to have a USB port for data transfer. Cheapo android sticks off aliexpress would work.

Looks like the xda developer is launching his own product on kickstarter for the same,. It will be running on a stripped down version of OrangePi device in a Linux environment. So, no slave phone and HeadUnit Server needed. I've a spare Raspberry Pi laying around. If they had released the linux version of it, I could have given it a try.
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Old 6th August 2020, 13:25   #10
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Default Re: Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bibendum90949 View Post
Just see if it's a similar thing with Spotify in your case. Phone's RAM can be a factor too I suppose.
Thanks bro.

In my case, there are zero disconnections. It's just that the visuals lag by a lot. For example, I may be at a signal, but the UI will still show that I'm 1km away from the signal and still traveling. If I stop for a while, it'll catch up, but once the car is running, it starts to lag. I have a 6GB version where's there's 2GB free almost every time. Might have to try with an even more powerful phone.

But since your phone has no such issues, I think the issue is with the HU rather than the phone.
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Old 6th August 2020, 19:03   #11
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Default Re: Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bibendum90949 View Post
Android Auto has been a big boon since it's advent. But the need to connect it via cable is a pain point.

Since the time I learned about an adapter that makes apple car play go wireless, i've been on the look out for a work around that makes AA work wirelessly too. Related thread below.
Hi Buddy,

Thank you for posting this. I had tried something similar with my Google Pixel, slave device being an older motog connected to my Accord.

It worked initially, had massive lag issues, especially with the maps and google voice commands.
Its like the Slave phone dictates the speed of commands and that would just hang.

In the end, I just gave up and connect my cell when I need navigation. For everything else, the phone connects via bluetooth and it works fine.

I was reading about those wireless chargers with builtin compatibility to connect to android Auto. I am curious about it, but haven't seen any live product.
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Old 6th August 2020, 19:39   #12
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Default Re: Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bibendum90949 View Post
Android Auto has been a big boon since it's advent. But the need to connect it via cable is a pain point.
First thanks for doing research and sharing it with the community.

I am AA user and I wished too that it should be wireless.

Unless my car is not equipped with wireless charing, I don't mind using cable setup for Android Auto. It serves both purposes i.e. AA and charging.

I have used Remi Note 4, POCO F1, Samsung S10, all works with cable flawlessly with Android Auto.
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Old 6th August 2020, 20:46   #13
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Default Re: Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi

Emil, the developer of the app, is working on a device that once plugged into your car, would make it wireless AA without any additional setup on the phone.

As long as the phone supports wireless AA, it will work.

He will be posting it on Kickstarter shortly.
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Old 7th August 2020, 08:18   #14
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Default Re: Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi

I am looking forward to the orangepi based solution the developer is mentioning about, with tasker or other automation app installed in the main phone, things can be automated such that on entering the car can automatically connect/disconnect without any effort from the user.

I am concerned about leaving the secondary phone with lithium ion inside car when it is parked under blazing sun.
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Old 7th August 2020, 20:41   #15
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Default Re: Wireless Android Auto for cars without inbuilt WiFi

Quote:
Originally Posted by sram View Post
I am looking forward to the orangepi based solution the developer is mentioning about, with tasker or other automation app installed in the main phone, things can be automated such that on entering the car can automatically connect/disconnect without any effort from the user.
As per him, even configuring in Tasker shouldn't be nesessary. It should work seamlessly. Let's see what comes out if it.
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