My previous blog post was about my history with mobile phones. How I have switched from Windows Mobile to Android to Windows Phone and back to Android. I have had a temporary car in the beginning of this month. It was a highline Volkswagen Polo which contained the native Volkswagen RS multimedia system. Android Auto worked perfect. Of course I had to download the .apk myself on the phone. But there are plenty of guides explaining that. I was really excited that my new car (Volkswagen Golf) would contain a Pioneer system. It was the Pioneer AVIC-EVO1-G72-BBF which has Apple Carplay and Android Auto. I connected my phone with a cable and…. nothing. So I called the Volkswagen dealer and they had to look into it. I got a call back that I would not have that option which seemed weird to me because it was the top most feature on the Pioneer website. After a few days my wife connected her iPhone to charge it and it launched Apple Carplay. I was blown away and took a look at the manuals that I found in the dashboard glovebox. In the installation manual it mentioned on page 8 that you had to connect a USB to a specific port on the back of the Pioneer. So that would explain that Carplay works and Android Auto did not. So I mailed and called the dealer again and they told me to bring the car in.
It took them over three hours to switch the cable on the back and test it. They could not get it to work. They even called Pioneer support and got an answer that it was not supported and would not work. They retrieved a brand new Pioneer system from the warehouse and it was largely displayed on the outside of the box that it would have Android Auto support. So a lot of effort and still no Android Auto. But at least the radio was connected to USB 2. I searched a while online and found this link. I thought it would not affect me because I do not have a Pixel. But I do have USB-C (Nokia 8) and when they delivered the car, there was an USB extension cable in the glovebox so I decided to give it a try. And it finally worked. So buying a short USB-C did not help me, because due to an issue on Pioneers end, I will always need an extension cable
Next step: try to update firmware of the adapter and the system itself. Currently I just keep getting incompatible USB stick. Even when it’s formatted as FAT32 filesystem and only has the firmware file on it in the root directory.