Oh my God, so that's why I always hear "Andrea Bocelli" when I plug my phone into my car. That was always bugging me, but not so much to actually look it up. Turns out many people have the same problem and this 'song', cleverly named "A a a a a Very Good Song" somewhat solves the problem, "effectively giving users 9 minutes and 58 seconds to choose their desired playlist and songs before starting their journey by car". Simple, yet brilliant.
The problem persisted.
Finally in the middle of a mind-wandering commute daze it occurred to me that my wife's phone had no songs in iTunes . She only listens to music via YouTube (don't ask). "You don't suppose...".
Yup. I put one song in her iTunes library and problem solved.
Literally yesterday I read about this "fix", so i re-downloaded the Music app and put just one song on it... yep it works!
Car players apparently assume you will only ever play music from the "default" library/app so when you connect it and it sees an empty library index, it assumes nothing can ever be played and just stops you there.
I'd conjecture it's a matter of how thoroughly apps got debugged by the vendors.
Never thought I'd be happy to see Carplay again with its 3-ring circus of UI tomfoolery, but there it is.
For example, my Google Home can play the Beatles on Youtube, but it fails with Google Play.
Second, I wonder how much PEBKAC issues like this cost apple per year in replacement devices?
No memory card inserted? No UI difference between "No Ethernet plugged into XBox" and "XBox connected correctly to LAN".
Insert memory card? Network magically appears.
(I may have almost taken a sledgehammer to the hardware after I stumbling across this issue while setting up a PAX game room. And no, the memory card is not used for LAN play.)
So you can't charge your phone in peace or use the car stereo for turn-by-turn navigation or anything else without also playing some music in the background.
It's absurdly frustrating, and I've joked with my wife about sticking a long silent track on her iPhone more than once. (I have an Android that the car just refuses to connect to at all.) I'm going to send her this article.
I was eventually able to remove it, but for a few weeks, auto-play music (and Bono) were the bane of my existence.
- Poor feedback UI. Why did the music suddenly stop? Is it buffering? Did bluetooth disconnect? Why does the UI behave like I pressed pause?
- It doesn't start back up in the state I left it when its purged by iOS. Use case: I'm listening to the Radio, and someone messages me a link to a video on a website, I load the site/watch the video. When I go back to apple music it'll start back up in the Library tab.
- Whats the difference between Stars and Hearts? Why do songs in my library focus on Hearts, and songs on the Radio focus on Stars? Why is liking/disliking a song always a 2-step process?
- Inconsistent UI behavior: Start a song from your library and the mini player will slide up from the bottom, same with a Radio station. However, switch Radio stations and the now playing screen will slide all the way up, taking over the screen.
- Search requires too much effort. Please check my library first, and if there are no results I would appreciate an Apple Music link instead of a No Results screen, a la Spotlight in iOS. This is a solved problem!
All of Apple's network-related software has this problem where they always assume nothing will ever go wrong and all networks are perfect. And then when something does go wrong usually there's not even an error message - simply nothing happens and you're left mashing buttons wondering if it even got your command.
If you're really lucky you'll get a generic "server error". I wasted an hour yesterday trying to log into my wife's MacBook Air using the iCloud login fallback before I realized the "server error" was actually the clock on the laptop being reset so the HTTPS negotiation failed since the certificate was not yet valid. Had to use the Terminal(!) in the recovery boot to fix the time.
Everyone that has experienced the issue seems to be using Bluetooth or USB (which I would not call "aux"), which of course sends a two-way data signal that allows some "smart" system to take control and play the same song every time (or not work at all!) for your convenience.
The car manufacturers probably see their in car systems as complete solutions and any additional audio systems as aux.
The root cause is Apple, as usual, has a set of use cases cast in stone and refuses to give customers what they want: a configurable experience.
I can kind of understand why Apple would want the entire world to only work with their proprietary connector, but for the life of me I still can't figure out why anyone else, especially auto manufacturers, went along with it. It's a horribly short-sighted decision for products like cars which regularly have a useful lifetime measured in decades.
You almost nailed it, until you mentioned Apple users wanting a brand name. I guess that's the stereotype though.
I used to be a config-every-bit-of-settings tech kid. But now... I just want a streamlined, simple UI that works for the 5 features I use daily (phone, messaging, camera, internet, and music). For the most part, Apple gets it right. macOS and iOS are perfect for my needs as a consumer and developer. I have no complaints. But listening to music with an iPhone -- with an Apple Music subscription -- ridiculously unpolished. It's a separate department that has been lost in the shuffle. I hope they start paying more attention to it.
Last year a colleague of mine ordered an Apple laptop, for $2800 (AU). Then he found out about the touchbar, which he didn't want, and cancelled the order. He was asking for other laptops, so I pointed him at an X1 for $2400. His response? "Too expensive". But you just paid $2800 for an Apple laptop? "Yeah, but when you run an apple laptop, people know you're running an apple". This guy was willing to pay a premium just for a brand name.
Turns out that did the trick.
Every time my car turns on and my iPhone is plugged in, the same song turns on until I load up Spotify and it takes over the audio signal. Sort of frustrating functionality.
I'm not even kidding, it exists.
I bought a copy of 4'33" on iTunes when I got my iPhone 3GS in 2010 to deal with this auto-play issue in my car. It worked well, and I suspect if more people were familiar with that composition before the release of this new track, 4'33" would have received more sales.
This has less of the legacy cruft associated with iPod mode, and I don't have any of that weird behavior - when I connect in bluetooth mode, my iPhone 7 resumes play in the same way it would resume play if I connected a pair of headphones, swiped up from control center, and pressed play.
Life got a lot less frustrating when I realized there was a difference between the modes - now I use Bluetooth exclusively, and charge the phone with an Anker car charging adapter. Much better not having to hear the first song on my phone every time I plug in my phone while I am driving.
It's amazing that the latest iPhone still works with this ancient never-updated random hardware designed in the click-wheel era. Kudos to Apple: that doesn't happen by accident.
(And now I'll only hear A'Part by Elephant Revival again if I choose to.)
This is everything wrong with Apple in a nutshell. I tried iTunes once, granted it was a long time ago, but I couldn't believe how confining it was. As someone else mentioned here, it was designed for precisely one use-case and completely useless for anything else.
If it works for you, that's great, but I'll take Amazon's Cloud service and their buggy Android music player any day.
I've been using Aux, Bluetooth - never had this issue.
This doesn't happen with bluetooth, and rarely (???) with headphones.
As a software engineer, I think the differences stem from whether the "now playing" playlist is being managed by the phone or by the car multimedia system. As a car driver, it's extremely annoying and I'm disappointed at how poorly it behaves.