It’s no secret that Google likes to keep developer options hidden away in most of its products—there’s no reason to have casual users tinkering around there, after all. But if you like to tinker (or are, of course, a developer), then this hidden menu can be a lot of fun.
Developer Settings is where you can find experimental features, tweaks, and things that aren’t necessarily meant for consumer access. Unsurprisingly, there’s a lot of useless fluff in there for anyone who isn’t a developer. Android Auto is no different, and while its hidden Developer Settings menu isn’t anything groundbreaking for non-developers, it’s still pretty neat.
All the Developer Settings are found in the Android app (not the Auto unit itself), so the first thing you’ll want to do is fire the app up.
Anyone who’s familiar with Android and Android’s developer settings should find the next step pretty familiar: tap on the “Android Auto” text in the top left 10 times. When you’re close to enabling the menu, a toast notification will show up with how many taps are remaining.
Once the toast shows you that the developer menu has been unlocked, you can access it from the three-dot overflow menu in the top right corner.
In this menu you can control some forward-facing features, like when day or night mode is toggled. The default settings is “car-controlled,” which will essentially activate night mode when the car’s headlights are turned on. You can also change it to phone-controlled, day only, and night only. I personally prefer to let the car control it, but it all depends on what you’re into, I guess.
Otherwise, it’s unclear what other the other things in this menu do for users, but feel free to poke around and see if you find something cool. There isn’t a lot of documentation about what these various settings do, so it’s all uncharted territory from here.