How Do You Cope With the Lack of Apple CarPlay Support? - 2004 to 2016 Mazda 3 Forum and Mazdaspeed 3 Forums
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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-03-2017, 08:49 PM Thread Starter
Rnbarg
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How To Cope w/Lack of Apple CarPlay?

I just leased a 2017 Mazda 3 GT Hatchback. I knew going in that Apple CarPlay was not available for the Mazda Infotainment System, at least not yet. What I didn't realize was just how much the Infotainment system would gum up or the works and how utterly incompatiable it was with my iPhone 7's Siri digital assistant.

For my last car, a 1994 Subaru Legacy, I relied almost exclusively on my iPhone for music, podcasts, navigation, radio stations, etc. The first thing I did at the dealership was to pair my iPhone 7. I soon discovered that the Mazda Infotainment system does not play well with Siri. With my iPhone paired directly with the Mazda Infotainment software, anytime I invoke Siri and give it a command, Mazda Infotainment treats it as a phone call. After Siri carrries out the command, Mazda Infotainment thinks a call has ended and sends a Play signal to my iPhone causing music to play whether I want it or not. Mazda Infotainment tries to play whatever music has been paused on your device. Its a complete basket case. Moreover, if you have asked Siri for navigation instructions, they don't play through the speaker thereafter. At times, I heard both music and Siri through the car speakers at once. There were even times I heard music, Siri directions and instructions from the Mazda Infotainment System. It was all too much.

My solution was to simply unpair my iPhone, which I suspect other iPhone owners have done. I then plugged my iPhone into the Aux audio port, using a lighting to 3.5 audio connnector since it's an iPhone 7 plus, effectively bypassing the Mazda Infotainment system. You can also use another standalone bluetooth device with the Aux input.

Mazda is one of the few manufacturers left that are not supporting Apple CarPlay which provides a rich and seamless circa 2017 platform and is well-integrated into Infotainment Systems in other cars. The NAV system supplied to Mazda by Johnson Controls is slow and not very smart. It's much like using an interactive voice response system that banks or other systems offer to the non-web savvy to transact business. Maza Infotainment is where cell phones used to be before Apple revolutioned the industry with the iPhone smartphone.

According to press reports, Mazda is losing at least some customers at the margin for whom Apple CarPlay is very important. I was willing to overlook the lack of Apple CarPlay because the Mazda 3 has overwhelming superiority over all other compact cars in the class.

The volume controls on the steering wheel work fine with with the iPhone plugged into the Aux port, but thats it.

Does Mazda have any plans to offer Apple CarPlay and, if so, will 2017 models be able to take advantage of the update? There already is a hack for Android to get it onto the Infotainment system as an application. So this thread is devoted to Mazda owners who are having to cope with a dated Mazda Infotainment system and play cat and mouse with their IOS devices, notably the iPhone and what steps they are taking to cope?

Do you use Apple iPhone with the Mazda Infotainment system?
Are you using a bluetooth or wired connection?
Do you use the Nav on Mazda Infotainment or Siri or a combination?
What are your greatest annoyances and your best workarounds?

Last edited by Rnbarg; 03-03-2017 at 09:36 PM.
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-03-2017, 09:50 PM
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I have an Iphone 7 Plus and I'm perfectly content with the Mazda system
Infact, I love it. Very simple to use
The Nav hasn't given me any problems, it's accurate, and always has signal despite the weather. I also disabled voice directions so it doesn't disturb my music.
I have a 16GB low profile usb stick for all my music, and the Mazda system makes it very easy to navigate through my music, and it also continues to play whatever song it stopped at last time you turned off the car (at the same point the song was stopped too)
That's pretty much all I need and want in my car.. music and nav
The only I use my phone for is to pair itself through bluetooth so I can make phone calls.

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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-03-2017, 10:17 PM
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Easy. I don't have an I phone, never have. I just don't care whether it has some apple product in it or not. The radio works, my Android links to the car just fine and plays music if I want. As for "navigation", what ever that means, I know my way around pretty well. To me "navigation" means using a compass, landmarks, stars etc to find your way around in unfamiliar surroundings. The term has nothing to do with a car telling me to turn right in 500 feet and driving into a ditch.

Oh, and if someone is buying a car solely based on whether or not the car has Carplay there are bigger issues at hand............

Last edited by arathol; 03-03-2017 at 10:21 PM.
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-03-2017, 11:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arathol View Post
Easy. I don't have an I phone, never have. I just don't care whether it has some apple product in it or not. The radio works, my Android links to the car just fine and plays music if I want. As for "navigation", what ever that means, I know my way around pretty well. To me "navigation" means using a compass, landmarks, stars etc to find your way around in unfamiliar surroundings. The term has nothing to do with a car telling me to turn right in 500 feet and driving into a ditch.

Oh, and if someone is buying a car solely based on whether or not the car has Carplay there are bigger issues at hand............
All of this.

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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-03-2017, 11:30 PM
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How Do You Cope With the Lack of Apple CarPlay Support?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Valor_X View Post
I have an Iphone 7 Plus and I'm perfectly content with the Mazda system

Infact, I love it. Very simple to use

The Nav hasn't given me any problems, it's accurate, and always has signal despite the weather. I also disabled voice directions so it doesn't disturb my music.

I have a 16GB low profile usb stick for all my music, and the Mazda system makes it very easy to navigate through my music, and it also continues to play whatever song it stopped at last time you turned off the car (at the same point the song was stopped too)

That's pretty much all I need and want in my car.. music and nav

The only I use my phone for is to pair itself through bluetooth so I can make phone calls.


Ditto for me no problems. I stream Pandora for music.

AirPlay would be nice. But until then, no drama about it.
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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-04-2017, 03:15 PM Thread Starter
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It's not a bad suggestion to turn off the voice prompts for navigation. The prompts give you way too much information anyway compared to Siri. They are agonizing to listen to. Siri and Google Now blow away the dedicated Nav systems in terms of speed and their user interface.

Admittedly, I'm not one for whom ""navigation" means "using a compass, landmarks, stars etc to find your way around in unfamiliar surroundings". This sounds like a person who lives in the heartland or some rural or exurban location and has a great sense of direction. For most people, navigation systems in cars are a godsend vs. stopping and asking for directions.

With Siri or Google Now, you simply tell it, "Take me home" or Take me to I-80, Directions to Golden Gate Park. Sitting down and typing out all this stuff, to me, is a complete waste of time as is being forced to give mutiple voice commands Ex. "Command - Navigation - Navigate - Address - City - Street - say line 1. Utterly ridiculous." I guess everything depends on your expectations.
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-04-2017, 03:23 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Valor_X View Post
I have an Iphone 7 Plus and I'm perfectly content with the Mazda system
Infact, I love it. Very simple to use
The Nav hasn't given me any problems, it's accurate, and always has signal despite the weather. I also disabled voice directions so it doesn't disturb my music.
I have a 16GB low profile usb stick for all my music, and the Mazda system makes it very easy to navigate through my music, and it also continues to play whatever song it stopped at last time you turned off the car (at the same point the song was stopped too)
That's pretty much all I need and want in my car.. music and nav
The only I use my phone for is to pair itself through bluetooth so I can make phone calls.
" also disabled voice directions so it doesn't disturb my music." It's so distrubing because it provides way too much information. With Siri, the interruptions take only seconds, w/the Nav, maybe 10-15 seconds.

"I have a 16GB low profile usb stick for all my music" - most people with iPhones love the fact that they have one device that does everything, that they can play their music, have album art, easily search and don't have to worry about upating external devices and that everything is backed up in the cloud. Using a USB stick for this is, with all due respect, so yesterday. The stick will eventually fail so you have to back it up, it could get stolen if someone breaks into your care, you have to take it in and out of the car to add to it. etc. Why have two systems?
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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-04-2017, 03:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rnbarg View Post

Admittedly, I'm not one for whom ""navigation" means "using a compass, landmarks, stars etc to find your way around in unfamiliar surroundings". This sounds like a person who lives in the heartland or some rural or exurban location and has a great sense of direction. For most people, navigation systems in cars are a godsend vs. stopping and asking for directions.

With Siri or Google Now, you simply tell it, "Take me home" or Take me to I-80, Directions to Golden Gate Park. Sitting down and typing out all this stuff, to me, is a complete waste of time as is being forced to give mutiple voice commands Ex. "Command - Navigation - Navigate - Address - City - Street - say line 1. Utterly ridiculous." I guess everything depends on your expectations.
The biggest problem is people are too dependent on technology now, especially the under 30 somethings.
Where I worked I frequently encountered people on the road who could not find their way home without their GPS even though they were less than a mile from where they lived. And then there were those who would park under the highway overpass and ask where the highway was because their GPS had no service....

My expectations are:
The car unlocks
The car starts
I can drive the car to where I am going.
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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-04-2017, 04:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rnbarg View Post
most people with iPhones love the fact that they have one device that does everything, that they can play their music, have album art, easily search and don't have to worry about upating external devices and that everything is backed up in the cloud. Using a USB stick for this is, with all due respect, so yesterday. The stick will eventually fail so you have to back it up, it could get stolen if someone breaks into your care, you have to take it in and out of the car to add to it. etc. Why have two systems?
All technology will fail sooner or later,i phones more sooner than later from what I have seen. USB sticks can last a very long time.
When you put everything you own on your iphone and it gets stolen, lost, dies, catches fire, blows up, gets assimilated by the Borg, whatever, its the end of the world according to some.
If you put everything on your phone and entrust your whole life to the "cloud", now that there is a problem.
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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-04-2017, 04:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rnbarg View Post
"I have a 16GB low profile usb stick for all my music" - most people with iPhones love the fact that they have one device that does everything, that they can play their music, have album art, easily search and don't have to worry about upating external devices and that everything is backed up in the cloud. Using a USB stick for this is, with all due respect, so yesterday. The stick will eventually fail so you have to back it up, it could get stolen if someone breaks into your care, you have to take it in and out of the car to add to it. etc. Why have two systems?
Of course I have my music backed up and flash memory is very robust, I would only worry about it breaking if it was an external mechanical hard drive
I also still get all the album art on MP3's and easy navigation with through the folders
Did you know it supports and plays uncompressed WAV files? That's the best thing I love about it since I'm an audiophile. Basically CD quality on a USB, and there is no current form of music streaming that matches true CD audio quality
Not just that but yeah I am oldschool and prefer to have my music on a USB stick/computers and not on my phone

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