Why iOS 9.1 with iPhone 6S, 6+, 5S, 5, 4S is causing Bluetooth problems with in-car infotainment (again)

iOS-9.1It’s deja vu all over again for iPhone owners who upgraded to iOS 9.1 and want all the features to work with in-car infotainment systems. The latest update appears to be causing problems all over the world. In Apple support  forums and in AUTO Connected Car News’ comments we continue to get complaints. What is very strange about the situation is that some people who had problems connecting with cars with iOS 9.01 have found that their Bluetooth now works. As always, the “nuke-it fix” of deleting all settings and starting all over again, appears to help some car owners.

Update 11/4/2015– Apple is no longer allowing users to downgrade to iOS 9.0.2.

Although Apple has tried to have fewer problems with each update with longer and larger deployments of beta versions of software, the world of car connections is diverse and complicated.

iOS 9.1 is not devoid of Bluetooth problems for non-car applications such as pairing with Logitech Bluetooth mouse, problems with email attachments and even some iPhone 6 models not working at all over update to 9.1, car connections appear to the most frustrating. Most Bluetooth car questions now in support forums go unanswered or have other car owners with the exact same car say they don’t have any problems.

Let’s look at some of the reported problems with iOS 9.1 and 9.01 and glitches then look at possible fixes that have worked in the past.

  • 2015 Ford F150 Apple Watch Disconnect -with an Apple watch with the driver and iPhone in my F150 (2015 model), that voice navigation from the Apple Maps App doesn’t work and playing any audio from the iPhhone doesn’t really work over Bluetooth anymore.
  • Mercedes C Class MB apps stopped working.
  • 2014 Ford Focus iOS 9.1 Pandora music streaming stopped working.
  • 2015 Chevy impala. No sound with notifications when Bluetooth is on in car with iOS 9.1.
  • Phone 6S+, iOS 9.1 won’t pair properly with a 2014 Subaru Forester. iPhone message says “no SIMM card installed” but intermittently it pairs for music sometimes.
  • iPhone 6s will not pair to 2008 Lexus RX350 but iPhone 5s works fine both on iOS9.1.
  • My BMW 535 F11 ( 2012 ) won’t show iPhone 6 Plus phonebook and voice control doesn’t work.
  • 2012 Skoda Octavia iOS 9.1. no audio through the car.
  • Ford SYNC Phone 6 with  iOS Version 9.1 (13B143), before update worked. When a song is selected for song on the iPhone, Bluetooth will disconnect. Some times after using the phone – I will hit the “play” button on my car and it disconnects. Disconnects for no reason other.
  • 2016 Mazda CX-5 text respond function doesn’t work.
  • 2011 Subaru Outback won’t pair with iOS 9.1 iPhone 6S.
  • ’14 Porsche Carrera with the Bose Bluetooth won’t connect.
  • 2016 Mazda Cx-5 since iOs 9.1 release, Bluetooth wont connect.
  • Kia Optima Hybrid 2012, iPhone 6 with iOS 9, Bluetooth won’t connect.
  •  VW olf, 201 – Phone 6s Plus iOS 9.1. Bluetooth doesn’t connect.
  • 2013 Hyundai Veloster – Pandora app doesn’t work with iOS 9.1.
  • 2015 MB GLA45 AMG. iPhone 6 connected to the Mercedes bluetooth, but disconnects on answering a call.  Mercedes has no work around.
  • 2014 Mercedes e250 coupe- iPhone 6 Plus Bluetooth connection works for voice calls but doesn’t for audio music streaming.
  • 2012 VW Pasat phone calls not routing through Bluetooth.
  • 2015 VW Passat plays media, but when a call comes in, it goes directly to the phone, not the car system. Up to iOS 9.02, it was completely fine for both calls and music. But now the sound on calls via bluetooth is just totally distorted.
  • iOS 9.1, iPhone 6, and 2011 Nissan LEAF  after getting a phone call, Bluetooth audio fails until you go into Settings/Bluetooth and tap on it.
  • iPhone 6+- iOS 9.1 busted Mazda Connect 9.0 Only the phone would connect and the address book. The audio profile would not connect any longer with 9.1 (all versions) Often had  disconnect phone (not unpair) and reconnect and then most of time it would load the audio profile for playing music.
  • 2015 Chevy Camaro occasionally drops Bluetooth audio connection with iOS 9 iPhone 6S.

The first tips that seem to work best are the following we have culled from over a year with dealing with Bluetooth glitches and iOS 8-9.

One fix that seems to help the most is disabling the “Handoff” feature which seems to clog up the processing.

The “Nuke-it-fix” and its variations of the continue to work for some Bluetooth fixes.  We just received this variation on the “Nuke-it-fix,” which resets all the networked settings

In general users found that “nuking” settings, clearing out everything and starting over helps in most cases.

1. Reset All Settings

Go to iPhone  Settings ▸ General  ▸ Reset  ▸ Reset all settings.

2. Unpair Phone and Car Infotainment System Rename Phone

Go to iPhone  Settings ▸ > General ▸ About ▸ Name. Change the name of the iPhone and pair with the car infotainment system again.

3. Restore Network Settings:

Restore all network settings of iOS 9.1.  Go to Settings ▸ General ▸ Reset (at the bottom)▸ Reset Network settings. This method is also deletes all Wi-Fi and other network settings!  If you reset you must re-add all your network settings in iOS.

4. Delete and Start All Over:

  • Delete all Bluetooth devices on the iPhone.
  • Deleted the phone from the car’s Bluetooth paired device.
  • Switch car off.
  • Switch Bluetooth off on iPhone.
  • Reboot iPhone using home and lock simultaneously.
  • Turn Bluetooth back on.
  • Start the car and pair the two to again.

5. Factory Reset & Restore

Factory reset  the iPhone 5s and re-install iOS 9.1 from scratch. Restore apps and more from  iTunes.

6.  Clear Out Everything Even Car Settings

  • Disconnect car battery to remove all settings from car.
  • Make a backup of your iPhone/iPod with iCloud backup.
  • Restore updated iPhone to new.
  • Once restored it should connect as it should.
  • Restore apps, calendar, music from  iCloud backup.

7. Reset Delete Variation

1. Delete iPhone device profile from car.
2. Delete Bluetooth link setting from iPhone for car phone.
3. Turn Bluetooth setting to “off”
3. Go to iPhone Settings> General> Reset > select “Reset all network settings.”
5. Do a two finger “hard reset” on iPhone.
6. Boot iPhone back up.
7. Turn Bluetooth back on.
8. Re-pair iPhone to car system.
9. Test by making a call and see if it drops.

Another recourse is to contact the company that makes your audio system and or your car dealership.

If you have updated to iOS 9.0-9.1 for iPhone 5/5S/5c 6-6+ 6S/6S+ and it fixed or fried your Bluetooth connection 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. The year and model of your car are very important.

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. At first it appeard that there were fewer issues with iOS 9.0 for iPhone 5-6-6S+, however, there seems to more reasons for car owners to use this emoji: :(.

The security update 9.02 also caused glitches for car owners.

Apple’s official changelog for iOS 9.1:

  • Live Photos now intelligently senses when you raise or lower your iPhone, so that Live Photos will automatically not record those movements.
  • Over 150 new emoji characters with full support for Unicode 7.0 and 8.0 emojis.
  • Improved stability including CarPlay, Music, Photos, Safari, and Search.
  • Improved performance while in Multitasking UI.
  • Fixes an issue that could cause Calendar to become unresponsive in Month view.
  • Fixes an issue that prevented Game Center from launching for some users.
  • Resolves an issue that zoomed content of some apps.
  • Resolves an issue that could cause an incorrect unread mail count for POP mail accounts.
  • Fixes an issue that prevented users from removing recent contacts from new mail or messages.
  • Fixes an issue that caused some messages to not appear in Mail search results.
  • Resolves an issue that left a gray bar in the body of an Audio Message.
  • Fxes an issue that caused activation errors on some carriers.
  • Fixes an issue that prevented some apps from updating from the App Store.

You are welcome to sign up for our newsletter for daily news, weekly news or just Bluetooth iOS 8+ – 9+ news to keep informed. Note: if you subscribe to email when published, you will get everything and don’t have to subscribe to other lists.

In case you are wondering Zerodium announced one hacking team had successfully created a browser-based jailbreak for iOS 9.1 and iOS 9.2, the latest versions of iOS 9, earning $1 million

32 thoughts on “Why iOS 9.1 with iPhone 6S, 6+, 5S, 5, 4S is causing Bluetooth problems with in-car infotainment (again)”

  1. I have an iPhone 6 that I use in my 2013 Hyundai Elantra. It was fine until a couple of months ago and then all of a sudden (don’t remember if it was update-related) my car controls lost some functionality. Now in iTunes I can only go back to the previous song or the beginning of the one I’m listening to; I can no longer go forward. Music sometimes just stops playing for no reason at all. Also, if my headset was connected I used to be able to change songs with it and it would change in the car but that broke at the same time. I’m a traveling dance and fitness instructor and I’m always listening to class music or choreography music in my car. It’s one of my most important tools. This is so frustrating! Hands-free is very important to me.

  2. I just updated my Iphone 6 for IOS 10.0.2 so my Iphone ‘s audio has a problem of connection with my car ” nissan pathfinder Hybrid 2014″ . Now it appears on the LCD screen that there is no song when I connect my iphone to Ipod source.

  3. The other approach is to realize the phone is not the issue. Instead of resetting the phone, reset infotainment. Pull the respective fuse for 15-20 seconds and wipe out the old pairings. We had 3 iPhones that worked flawlessly until iOS 9. After that, none of the 3 worked. Deleted all the paired iPhones and viola, all three retired and have been working since.

    • Excellent idea. Some people have disconnected the car battery for the same effect. We’re adding to the fix list.

  4. I have iPhone 6 Plus and my car sat nav will not pair but my partners Samsung does I’m well upset that’s why I bought the Tom Tom car

  5. I have a 2015 Ford F-150 Lariat. Can get phone to sync for phone functions and recognizes and controls music, but won’t play music over system. Frustrating as hell!

  6. I have a 2016 Camaro and I recently upgraded my phone to the iPhone 6S and it will not play music through bluetooth. It only plays through the apple car play with the cord.

  7. 2016 GMC Terrain – issues with iTunes/Pandora/Maps choppy audio. I recently updated my iPhone 5s to the 9.3.2 iOS in hopes their fix would resolve it. No luck. I’ve deleted and repaired my devices, still no luck. My phone works fine, my BF’s Android works fine. One Apple advisor is telling me to Factory Reset my phone and the other is saying it’s the auto manufacturers fault and to contact them to see if there is a software upgrade. VERY annoying and frustrating all around. I’ll try a few more of these options and see if any of those work.

  8. 2016 Mazda CX-5.
    I didn’t have any issues until the latest update 9.3.1 on my iPhone 6+

    Bluetooth connectivity cuts in and out, and my auxiliary cable keeps saying it is not supported.

    After un-pairing the phone, and deleting the settings, it worked for a few hours, but then stopped working again after I had turned off the car for a while.

    I’ll try some of the suggestions in this forum and hopefully fix this problem.

  9. Hello, I have a 2012 C300 Mercedes and over the weekend the bluetooth on calls crapped out. Instead of ringing when dialing it beeped and the calls dropped or were pure static. I did steps 1 & 2 and that seemed to work. Thank you so much!

  10. I have a 2014 Kia Forte 5. Reset default settings in infotainment on car. Seems to be working now. Fingers crossed.

  11. Upgraded to iOS 9.2.1 and now my 2014 Kia Sportage will play one song through Bluetooth and then its like the Bluetooth connection gets lost and it goes back to the radio. VERY frustrating.

  12. I used to pair my iPhone 6plus with ford kuga 2015 and it was working properly
    Now after updating iOS 9.2 phone couldn’t be paired however phone can be paired in any other car and car can be paired with any other phones

  13. I made the mistake of upgrading my perfectly fine iPhone 6s to a new iPhone 6s. I cannot use the new phone to play music in my 2013 Toyota Tacoma either through Bluetooth or even directly via a cable. All I get is a spinning wheel on the entertainment screen.

  14. My iPhone 6splus is now having problems with the connection to my 2015 Nissan Versa Note. It connects but when you make a call the audio is not coming through the car

    • This is similar to what happened to me after the 9.3.4 update. I have an iPhone 6 and a 2013 Subaru Outback. Other than slow connection, the phone worked fine until about a week ago. Now I can dial out, and be heard at the other end, but can’t hear a thing at my end. Ridiculous. I tried everything, including the famous “nuke”.

  15. Ever since I updated my phone to 9.2, I have been having issues with my bluetooth. I will be speaking on my phone and as soon as the call ends, my iTunes music will start playing automatically over the bluetooth out of nowhere. How do I disable this? It has become very annoying!!

    iPhone 6s Plus, iOS 9.2

  16. I have a 2014 hyundai sante fe sport. My iphone 6s used to pair without issue, but has just started saying “This phone does not support bluetooth” even though it’s showing as connected on both the phone and the car. My phone is also one having a lot of issues with the random restarts. Don’t know if that’s all connected.

  17. Nov 2015 Since I did the upgrade to iOS9.1 my Iphone 4s dosent work on my Mercedes E220, I can make calls and receive calls I can hear but no one can hear me, is there any way that I can return to iOS8? It worked well and didn’t have any problems, now I cant make phone calls when driving.

  18. Well after a week of trying everthing including disconnecting car battery, AND having spent nearly 2 hours at the Apple store (goes through what’s on internet, then says call manufacturer!), we nearly gave up.
    At home whilst discussing the issue, my son who used to work in mobile stores in his University days overhears and pipes up ” why don’t you change the settings in accessibilty to Bluetooth headset?” Now everthing works great.

    So the settings are – General>Accessibilty>CAr Audio Routing and select “Bluetooth Headset” instead of of the default Automatic.

    Looks like there is a bug in the Automatic setting.

  19. This is not just car related. It is iPhones only. I have two iPhone 5’s on different IOS. both fail to connect properly to bluetooth headphones and the car THB Bury 8 systems. Samsungs and Blackbury connect just fine.
    So I updated one iPhone to IOS9.1. The problems are still there. I can connect to both bluetooth headphones and Bury car kit. I can call out and both work fine. On incoming calls, I get no sound on headset, although the iPhone is ringing. When trying the Bury kit, ring tone comes on car speaker, but when you answer it, the sound can only be heard on the iPhone.

  20. 2014 Toyota Tacoma after update to 9.1, bluetooth disconnects after every phone call, including Siri broadcasting as a phone call. Vehicle must be stopped to reconnect.

  21. Only trip up is I no longer get notification of incoming texts….no sound out of phone and doesn’t register on screen of cars infotainment system…

  22. 2014 Kia Soul. Bluetooth worked great playing my music until I updated to iOS 9.1 a couple days ago. Now I cannot play music through Bluetooth, only through auxiliary cables and I lose song titles and any ability to skip songs through the wheel or dash controls. I’m pretty pissed off about it. Normally I don’t EVER upgrade my iOS since it tends to break things, but I was still on iOS 7 with my iPhone 5S and wanted the new emojis. Now I get this nightmare. Looks like my next phone will be an android.

  23. To the owner of the 2013 Hyundai Veloster having trouble with Pandora: Prior to iOS9.1, you had to have the Pandora app open on your phone before opening the Pandora app on the car. Now, it’s just the opposite. Do NOT open Pandora on your phone; just open it on the car and it works fine.

  24. Im a car audio installer and what i’ve found that works is taking out all special characters of your phones name ( ‘ # .- ) . example Jhon’s iPhone will trip up most Bluetooth’s so change it to Jhons iphone will usually fix the issue.

  25. 2015 Acura TLX. Bluetooth fine. Problem is Lightening to USB is deemed “Unsupported”. Also Pandora freezes. Fix: Sign out of App Store, turn iPhone on and then off. Everything works so long as I am logged out. Of course, that means no Music.

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