Back in February, Google Maps gained a much-welcomed feature that allowed the app to simultaneously be shown in Android Auto dashboards and on connected Samsung and Android smartphones. But you might also remember that this addition was short-lived. It turned out this was an unintended feature or, if you will, a bug. And Google Maps lost this ability within days. Thankfully, things are changing for the better once again.
Numerous Reddit users report that they can now use Google Maps navigation on Android Auto dashboards and connected Android phones simultaneously. This time, it may be an official addition intended by Google rather than the result of a screen mirroring bug.
This change may have come with the latest Maps update
Google updated its Maps app for mobile phones a couple of days ago, on June 28. The release brought the app to version 11.85.0300. In the official changelog, Google mentions that the latest update “brings bug fixes that improve our product to help you discover new places and navigate to them.” The description seems fitting for what has happened now regarding Android Auto, but the changelog doesn't outright mention this improved integration.
Hopefully, this is not another fluke, and Samsung device users — and indeed other Android users — will continue to be able to use Google Maps while running Android Auto on their connected cars' dashboards.
Having Google Maps on your phone's screen while Android Auto is active is particularly useful for drivers whose cars support Android Auto but whose dashboards don't have touch controls. In these cases, navigating Google Maps menus using the Galaxy phone, or other Android phones, for that matter, while Android Auto is active, is much more convenient.