MapFactor Navigator is a free GPS app with monthly map updates. It works entirely offline, so you don’t need an internet connection to navigate. Presently, the app works in over 200 countries.
You get turn-by-turn navigation and a voiceover telling you where to go. It has the usual camera warnings, speed limit signs, and estimated time to reach your destination.
On the other hand, Android Auto is a top-rated car app that lets you mirror your phone’s screen and make driving much more effortless. It emulates some essential Android phone features onto the car’s entertainment unit.
The primary use of Android Auto is GPS mapping and navigation. However, Google Assistant makes it much more intelligent. You can play music hands-free, ask it to answer questions, and also call anyone else.
You can also use Android Auto for sending texts and browsing the web. Voice commands reduce distractions when driving so you can keep your eyes on the road.
Coolwalk is a significant redesign for Android Auto, and it adds some functional features as well. For some people, it began rolling out on the 5th of January, 2023.
The rollout of Coolwalk UI isn’t public yet. Google did not tie one specific Android version to Coolwalk, which they control with a server-side switch.
This means that Google chooses who gets the new UI at what date. Updating to the latest Android Auto version does not guarantee you’ll get Coolwalk.
If you don’t see Coolwalk, you’ll have to wait until the rollout happens. Google is doing it in a slow, phase-wise manner to avoid a mass rollout that’s buggy.
They want to ensure the experience is as refined and reliable as possible once they release it to everyone. Since the rollout is gradual, you can expect to see Coolwalk sometime in 2023.
With Coolwalk, you can run multiple applications side-by-side on your car. This dramatically improves multitasking capabilities.
Google Maps is more extensive and covers more detail. They added a new dock at the bottom to switch between recent apps effortlessly.
Coolwalk brings new swipe gestures and the popular Material You design theme to Android Auto. You’ll also see some redesigns to system apps. The new media player is much more functional. Coolwalk draws some inspiration from Apple’s CarPlay.
We saw Android Auto 8.7, 8.8, 8.9, and even the latest 9.0 stable version. Still, not everyone got the new UI. Recently, MapFactor Navigator got the new Coolwalk UI too. This confirms that the rollout is going well and could hit many more devices soon.
The new update to MapFactor Navigator 7.3 shows ETA, distance to the next destination, and the next turn, along with the whole route, all in one place, thanks to CoolWalk. Important information is right on the dashboard.
You can now use the navigation card to expand to fullscreen mode. There are some additional multitasking features like Picture-In-Picture mode, which Coolwalk enables. You can minimise navigation to a smaller window and use another app.
The minimised version includes a tinier map and shows the next turn. Tapping on it will bring it back to its full size.
At the time of writing, only MapFactor Navigator and Android Auto have proper Coolwalk UI support. It’s still in Beta for other apps like Waze, and we might see a full version soon. We’ll update you if there’s any new info.