You can no longer turn off wireless Android Auto

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Android Auto has supported wireless connections for a few years now, but it’s only been over the past year that folks have been able to use it widely. And, now, Google has decided to remove the toggle that made it easy to turn off wireless Android Auto in the latest app update.

Android Auto 8.7 which started widely rolling out this week removes the toggle for “Wireless Android Auto” that has been available in the settings menu for ages now. The toggle was visible under the “System” section directly above the option to turn off Google Analytics. The change is also in place on Android Auto 8.8, which is available to some beta program participants.

In years past, this toggle was disabled by default in many cases, leading to users needing to dig into their settings to use wireless adapters for Android Auto such as AAWireless. Now, Google appears to be leaving that toggle on by default, but that also removes the option to turn off the functionality.

To be clear, wireless Android Auto isn’t affected by this change. You’ll still be able to jump into your car and continue using the feature as you have, you just can’t turn off wireless Android Auto on your device. As SmartDroid points out, that could be a little frustrating if you wanted to turn off the functionality on just one device so a partner’s device could connect. However, it is relatively easy to block the connection by simply turning off Bluetooth, or briefly activating airplane mode while the other device is connecting.

Another notable change in Android Auto’s settings is the renaming of “Silent Notifications” to “Play Conversation Chime,” but that seems to have been added in an older update and just not noticed by most folks. Google has also recently stripped the option to “show first line of incoming messages” when the vehicle is stopped, since that functionality is now baked into “Coolwalk” by default.

It is a little odd to see Google removing the toggle for wireless Android Auto, but in the end it might lead to less confusion from users. And, notably, there’s technically still a toggle to turn off wireless Android Auto in the developer settings (accessed by tapping the version number over and over again), it’s just not easily accessible by the average Joe.

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