Most Android devices do not have a true "Car Dock", a cradle that their device can be seated in which can (depending on model) provide power, route audio, and instruct the Android device to display a "Car UI", with larger icons and text appropriate for vehicle use.
The Car Kit was designed to remedy this problem for users with devices that do not have a true "Car Dock." Additionally, the Car Kit can expand upon the docking functionality that users with a true Car Dock already have.
Car Kit allows users to select input criteria to designate they're in the vehicle (for example, connecting their device to a power source, connecting a headset, and bluetooth connects to a device, like a headunit.) Upon doing so, Car Home can be displayed automatically, WiFi toggled off, and Music is launched automatically.
These actions occur automatically when the inputs are met, so the user doesn't need to perform these actions on their device manually. When the Disengage criteria are met (for example, unplugging the device from power), all of the actions taken by Car Kit are undone, returning your device to it's prior state.
Additionally, Car Kit includes a Widget that allows you to Engage or Disengage it's settings at will.
- SMS messages displayed in a large window when received
- Switching to Car Home UI and back automatically
- Displaying battery charge (or loss) statistics
- Launch selected application
Android Permissions Breakdown:
RECEIVE_BOOT_COMPLETED: Allows Car Kit to start when you power on your device.
READ_PHONE_STATE: Necessary for Speakerphone functionality.
BLUETOOTH / BLUETOOTH_ADMIN: Bluetooth functionality, including toggling.
MODIFY_AUDIO_SETTINGS: Adjusting volume.
ACCESS_WIFI_STATE/CHANGE_WIFI_STATE: Adjusting WiFi.
UPDATE_DEVICE_STATS: An (erroneously) required permission that some devices need in order to be able to change WiFi. This is a bug, and listed on the Android bug tracker. I've included it to allow users with devices who experience this bug to be able to use WiFi functionality without getting a Force Close error.
WAKE_LOCK: Keep the device awake / adjust screen brightness settings.
RECEIVE_SMS: Necessary to display SMS messages as they're received.
READ_CONTACTS: Associates incoming SMS messages with contacts on your device, so they show as your contact's name rather than the contact's phone number.
CALL_PHONE: Necessary to call a contact back directly from the Show SMS pop-up.
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Improved performance, reduced widget size, and fixed an issue that could cause "SMS Pop-up" ghosting on fast devices.