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Car thing and car stereo trying to use different bluetooth sources


Car thing and car stereo trying to use different bluetooth sources






iPhone 13 Pro

Operating System

iOS 16


My Question or Issue

I've had the Car Thing for about a year now. When I first got it I was using an Android phone and I upgraded to an iPhone in June. During that time period I used the car thing just about every day with no issues on either phone. I have a 2019 Toyota 4Runner with factory stereo not equipped for Android Auto or Apple Carplay which is why I purchased the Car thing.


3 days ago there was an update to the Spotify software on my phone. Since that update happened I am having major connectivity issues. The iPhone will not consistently stay on Spotify. The Car Thing wants to play spotify but the car itself/bluetooth wants to switch to Apple Music any chance it can get. If I mess around with it/switch sources/disable and enable bluetooth sometimes I can get it to work, but then randomly it will just change to Apple music again in the middle of a song.


I really don't know what to do to make everything work properly again. I've tried totally uninstalling apple music. When I do that I can get spotify to play but the track does not show up on the vehicle infotainment screen. It is blank as if there is no music available on the connected bluetooth source. Also the steering wheel buttons will not control skipping tracks etc unless the car itself shows it is connected to Spotify.


I feel like since it happened right after the update that it most likely has something to do with the update.

38 Replies

I have been having the same issue for about a week now, 2009 BMW X5. Apple Music overrides the car thing and it tries to play both Apple Music and Spotify simultaneously. Very frustrating. I tried disabling car play just in case, even though it shouldn’t be compatible with my car. Didn’t really help.

@AlejaR - Factory resetting did not correct the issue

I had a chat with spotify support....sent them this post and pretty much they told me to do everything I've done...also that I should try an Android phone instead to see if it does it with that. Finally I think I got them on board with sending everything over to the software team to take a look at. Fingers crossed that they get this all sorted out soon.

I hope more stumble across this thread and post to this. Only way Spotify will fix it is if enough people complain.

Also @bassplayer1018, I’ll check the app version on my android phone and see if that has the same issue. 

Not sure what good it will do if it works since it isn’t my daily driver but at least we will know if this is an android and iOS issue or just an iOS issue

They want me to take a video of what is happening and upload it. The last thing they told me to do in the chat was to bring the car thing inside, do another factory reset and fresh setup, and then leave both turned on all night overnight. I did that and everything is exactly the same.

If you want to let them know I can provide a video also of the system showing Spotify isn’t playing on the lock screen or Notification Center when changing presets from the car thing. 

Really surprised they are now just seeing this as an issue. 

I am also still having this issue after doing all of the above. The only thing that has helped the music not play at the same time on my car Bluetooth is to completely unplug the car thing. Really hoping there’s a fix for this soon as it makes the car thing completely unusable. 



I have found that too, if you leave car thing unplugged their are no issues or if you solely choose to use Apple Music it works fine. 

The issue is playing music from Spotify itself and confirms to me the apps recent update does not communicate with car thing and the car receiver properly

Spotify has released a new app update today, checking to see if it fixes the issues and will report back shortly.

100% a confirmed bug as of around a week ago. Combination of iPhone + Spotify + CarThing + car Bluetooth audio and controls no longer work reliably (as described in more detail by others), remove CarThing from the equation (eg. unplug it) and things work again.


Look forward to a Spotify app update to fix. Thanks.


Btw. it would inspire some more confidence if Spotify reps on this thread acknowledged the bug and confirmed it was being investigated, as opposed to the stock "try resetting it?" answer 😕 

FYI. have two different CarThings, in two different cars (different makes/models), usually running from the same iPhone however have now tried even another iPhone for good measure = doesn't work.

So I just ran out to my car and while Car Thing doesn’t update the song right away, this has been fixed in the latest Spotify app release!


So if anyone is still having issues, update your Spotify app

What is the newest version? Just want to make sure I am using it since I don't see an update prompt on my Spotify app on iPhone



Agreed, even though this is fixed now, we should have a rep from @Spotify still own up to this was a bug released and fixed. 

hope everyone is enjoying car thing again now!

Marked as solution



Thank you!!!

You’re welcome and I hope that we don’t run into this issue ever again lol!

Seems like the update works for me as well

Mine is updated and I have an Android and it still won't connect. It connects for about 30 seconds, disconnects, reconnects, disconnects, then remains disconnected. So frustrating.

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