With every update of iOS on iPhones there seems to be problems with Bluetooth connectivity, especially with in-car infotainment systems. Last year, the update to iOS 8.0 wreaked havoc Bluetooth connections in cars. With each generation of iOS updates there was a new batch of glitches for automotive users. So what will happen with iOS 9.0 when in comes out sometime in September?
iOS 8.4.1 was released there were more reports of users unable to pair Bluetooth in cars. There are also reports that different iPhone models with the same iOS work differently in the same car.
Our readers commented:
- “Upgraded my iPhone 6 to IOS 8.4.1. It no longer connected via USB connection to my BMW Z4. Then I upgraded to latest BMW AUX/USB firmware, playback is now possible but music gets dropped every so often.”
- “I got a VW Golf TSI 2013 in June. I have 3 iPhones. One iPhone 5C that works perfectly. One more is a 5C that never worked which connects and disconnects several time and then gives up. One is an iPhone 5S that works perfectly.”
- “2008 Infiniti G35X -the Bluetooth phone connection still works for iPhone 5, but the infotainment system no longer responds to my iPhone when I plug in the cable. When I finally gave in an upgraded to iOS 8.3, the car simply didn’t recognize my phone anymore.”
- “I lost the iPhone and audio connection via Bluetooth and my 2016 Mazda CX-5 after updating to 8.4. I can control music and get playlists through USB only.
iOS 9 Test Findings So Far
The good news is that now Apple iOS updates spend more time in beta testing than previous updates and there are reports from a public beta tester that it corrected disconnecting problems with Bluetooth devices. iOS 9 beta 5 was released, last week, to testers.
With iOS 9, there is new option to disconnect Bluetooth from the iPhone easily. In previous versions of iOS to disconnect your iPhone from a Bluetooth device you have to either temporarily disable Bluetooth on or remove it with “Forget this device” in Bluetooth settings. In iOS 9 to disconnect from a Bluetooth device, launch the iOS Settings app and select Bluetooth from the list, then tap on ‘i’ next the device name, then tap on Disconnect.
This Bluetooth “Disconnect” could be helpful for Bluetooth problems since previous glitches seemed to have been caused by saved Bluetooth settings from previous versions of iOS that responded to the “nuke-it-fixes” of deleting everything, from the car (even disconnecting the battery) as well as the iPhone and starting Bluetooth pairing from scratch.
iOS 9 will have wireless CarPlay and support for auto manufacturers to develop apps within CarPlay. Because the connection to the car is wireless for CarPlay, most likely upon entering the vehicle, you won’t have to plug in the iPhone to connect to CarPlay. CarPlay also plays audio messages. iOS 9 allows for the use of car’s knobs to control CarPlay. In the future, we may see connected car apps from automakers. So far very few cars have CarPlay working, therefore the rest of us, we will still need Bluetooth.
Siri gives contextual reminders, based on usage patterns, and notifying user when to leave for appointments, taking into account traffic conditions in iOS 9. The software on iPhones will even learn what someone typically listens to in a certain location or at a particular time of day such as s/he gets in the car before work, it can automatically display playback control for music.
One of our readers reported that he has an Phone 6 Plus running the iOS 9 beta in a 2015 Ram 1500 with UConnect. It seems to be working well except for one problem. He used to be able to listen to or at least be notified of incoming texts on UConnect.
Beta testers in forums have reported when they connect iPhones to cars via Bluetooth, iOS 9 automatically offers suggestions related to what the driver usually does. If the driver usually listens to music while driving, it is likely that playback controls or a suggested a playlist will be displayed on the Lock screen.
Commuters who want to get to their destination in the fastest way possible report that iOS 9 displays real-time traffic updates and an approximate time it will take to reach the usual destination through Apple Maps notifications on the Lock screen.
Battery optimization for better battery life in iOS 9 will allow drivers to not have to charge their iPhones as often. Software updates require less space to install and an Install Later feature can perform updates to your device when it’s not in use.
If you have updated to iOS 8.4.1 for iPhone 5/5S/5c 6-6+ and it fixed or fried your Bluetooth issues or music streaming with your in-car infotainment system, please let us know in the comments below, be sure to note your make, model and year of your vehicle. We also welcome any solutions you have found worked with your car.
We have comments from readers that there are still Bluetooth problems reported with BMW, Audi, Acura, MINI, GM(Chevy, GMC, Cadillac, Buick), Honda, Kia, Toyota, Volkswagen, Mercedes-Benz, Mazda, Lexus, Fiat, Hyundai, Chrysler, Acura, Mazda and more.
Previously, after talking to many automakers we asked Why Bluetooth iOS 8-8.1 & iPhone 6-6+ issues persist in cars? It seemed like the 8.1 update helped with a few new model cars. Here is a summary of Bluetooth issues and fixes and checkout the most popular nuke-it fixes.
We received good and bad news about iOS 8.2 when it was first launched.
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