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Google, please fix your account issues before more cars get Android Automotive

If you’re like me, you have a Google account for most of your day-to-day life. You might even have a Google Apps for Business account, which allows you to have a custom domain name among other things. I don’t have multiple users, but I wanted a reasonably affordable custom domain suite of options. Google is that answer for me.

If you are also like me, you know these accounts aren’t full Google accounts. Sure, you can log in on the web and do most things there. And you can log in on an Android phone or in Google software and do most things. But when you connect to something like a Google Home device, or want to migrate your Nest account to a Google account (which the company BEGS you to do each time you log in), you have issues. In the case of the latter, it’s not supported at all.

That sucks.

This week I’m testing out the new version of Super Cruise on an refreshed Silverado. GM is now using an Android Automotive-based infotainment system, and it’s a significant improvement over what the company was using before. It’s responsive. It’s informative. It has Google Assistant. It’s great.

But I want to try downloading apps from the Google Play Store. On Polestar and Volvo products, I don’t need to log into Google to download apps (at least I didn’t when I drove the Volvo C40 back in Belgium late last year). But in order to do that on this Silverado, I need to log in.

Since I’m going to go for an extensive drive with Super Cruise, I figured I might as well also log in to Google to get my own Google Maps history and other things. I want to live with the new infotainment the way a new customer would.

But I can’t. Why?

Because when I attempt to log in with my Google account, it tells me the account type is not supported.

The same issues that prevent me from having full functionality of Google Home or let me migrate my Nest account over also apparently prevents me from logging into Google in my new, expensive car that I want to customize.

While, in this case, this is not my truck, it’s still really freakin’ annoying that it doesn’t work.

Customers aren’t going to necessarily know that. They’re going to go to their dealership and complain to the service department. The service department is going to try to figure out why it doesn’t work, and then be stumped because it should just work. Then that service department is going to get less than 5 stars on the survey because the issue wasn’t resolved.

This isn’t a General Motors issue. This isn’t a Chevrolet issue. It’s a Google issue. And it’s about to be a bigger issue as more automakers start using Android Automotive to power their infotainment systems.

Fix it. Please.

Written by Chad Kirchner
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