When it comes to mobile devices, Apple and Google are already doing battle in your pocket, on your coffee table, in your living room and in your office. According to a new report, it looks like the next big battlefield will be in your car.
First, a quick note: it’s never a good sign when a blog calls its own report a “rumor,” which is what Android Police did while reporting this news. Odd though it may be, the site says its confidence level is 9/10, and it has a good track record.
With that out of the way, Android Police reported this past weekend that Google is about to get far more serious when it comes to Android in the car. It might not be ready to launch a full CarPlay competitor just yet, but the company is apparently getting ready to make some big changes that will make Android devices much easier and safer to use on the road.
According to the report, Google is prepping a new Android feature code-named “KITT” that will take iOS’s eyes-free mode to the next level.
When an iPhone is connected to a car’s Bluetooth systems, it offers an eyes-free mode that makes Siri more interactive and comprehensive. With this mode, drivers can keep their eyes on the road while Siri reads new messages and performs other tasks that don’t require the driver to divert his or her attention.
Google apparently plans to take things a step further.
With KITT, nicknamed after David Hasselhoff’s car in the 1980s TV show “Knight Rider,” Android devices will enter an always-listening mode when connected to a car’s infotainment system. This will allow the drive to simply speak commands and have his or her phone react accordingly. Users will apparently be able to search Google, interact with Google Now, dictate messages and plenty more.
The new feature could be unveiled at the Google I/O developer conference later this month, according to the report.