Previous 1 2 Next 17 Replies Latest reply: Dec 1, 2015 5:14 PM by wyliesdiesels77
ANM2013 Level 1 (0 points)

I am not getting any alert tone (voicemail, text, etc) when my iphone 5 is connected to my car's bluetooth. I do get the notification and the phone does vibrate, but there is no sound. Same is true for my wife who drives a different brand car. The strange thing is that if I am already on a phone call through the car's bluetooth and get a text while on the call, the alert tone does sound through the car's speakers. If anything, the tone should be silenced if a person is already on the phone as it causes a distraction during the conversation. But I would like to find out if there is any way to activate the alert sounds when the phone is connected through the car's bluetooth.

iPhone 5, iOS 6.1.4
  • ChrisJ4203 Level 8 (44,915 points)

    I have found this with my vehicle as well. I have a feeling this has to do with the Bluetooth going into a sleep mode in the vehicle. When my phone rings, it takes a short period before the ring actually starts in the car, but has already shown on the phone and the phone has vibrated. I believe it also has to do with the short SMS tones. By the time the Bluetooth in the car wakes up, the tone is already completed.


    The fact you hear the tone while on the phone has to do with the same issue, the Bluetooth is awake because you are on the phone, and that is why you can hear it. I have realized the same thing with the mail tone.


    I don't worry about it so much since we shouldn't be looking at our devices to text or mail while moving. Even reading these things is dangerous. I'm waiting for more vehicles to support texting through the vehicle. That is not that available yet. You would be able to have the vehicle "read" the message to you and you would be able to dictate a response without having to look at the device.

  • ANM2013 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks for the response. Glad to know that I am not the only one having this problem. Having said that...I believe, for several reasons, that this is actually a feature / glitch in iphone 5.


    To the best of my knowledge this problem does not exist on previous versions of iphone. Secondly, once my iphone is connected to bluetooth, it does not even allow me to set any of the ringtones or alert tones associated with texts, voicemails or notifications. Try this with your phone...once it is connnected to your car's bluetooth, go to Settings - Sounds - Text Tone (or New Voicemail). Select any of the Alert Tones or Ringtones. If you have set your phone to vibrate for Text, it will vibrate, but you will not hear the tone. The same Alert Tones or Ringtones will be audible if you had selected Ringtone (phone ringer) instead of Text Tone or New voicemail in the previous menu. This tells me that the problem has nothing to do with the size of SMS tones or the bluetooth being in the idle mode.


    Furthermore, I have the Tunein Radio app on my phone. The second that my phone is connected to bluetooth, I loose sound from the radio app. Not only does the radio app not play through my car's speakers, it also stops playing through the phone's speaker.


    So all in all I believe this is an Apple issue that they need to resolve. Finally, I understand that we should not text and drive. But Apple should not be in the business of restricting what an individual can or cannot do. Playing the sound simply serves to inform the owner of a new text or voicemail. It is up to the driver if they wish to respond to it.

  • ChrisJ4203 Level 8 (44,915 points)

    I'm sorry to disappoint you, but I have an iPhone 4S with iOS 6.1.3, so it is not just the iPhone 5. It has been this way for over a year, which would include several iOS versions. I can try the vehicle question you have later. I don't have access to the vehicle right now.


    I'm not sure if any of the web based streaming apps will play over Bluetooth in a vehicle. Since this is a sound app, I'm not sure it Bluetooth supports that, but it would take someone other than me to test that, since I don't stream music that way. I do use Bluetooth on occasion to play my iTunes music in the vehicle and that works just fine. The restriction for text tones may be based in the ability of the Bluetooth stack to support it, if the device does not support the texting portion of Bluetooth.


    If you believe this is something Apple needs to be aware of, then you need to let them know this. This can only be done via the feedback page at and click on the appropriate link.


    EDIT: Here are the appropriate support documents about Bluetooth. One is about what profiles the iPhone supports, and the other is about Bluetooth FAQs. It could be also that the vehicle does not support the latest Bluetooth profiles.


    Message was edited by: ChrisJ4203

  • ANM2013 Level 1 (0 points)

    Appreciate the quick responses. I will contact Apple and post these questions. I know this issue does not exist on my friend's iphone. He might have 4 and not 4S...not sure.


    I am not expecting the web based streaming apps to play over Bluetooth, my concern is that it even stops playing through my iphone speaker as soon as it connects to the car.


    In any case, thanks for all the help and suggestions.

  • ChrisJ4203 Level 8 (44,915 points)

    When playing the app, you should have the option to choose what audio source you want for the app. That is what allows you to decide whether to use the phone or bluetooth when answering the phone. I would guess there is a small box in the lower right corner with an arrow in it. That should open the selection box.


    I would be curious to know if your friend's phone works differently in your vehicle. This would be the true test. Or, if his device works in his vehicle and yours does not. It is kind of hard to say it is different with different phones in different vehicles. I know testing my son's iPhone 5 in my vehicle while on a trip resulted in the same behavior as my iPhone 4S.

  • Lofty101 Level 1 (0 points)

    The problem is that I have hearing aids and can play through them for phone calls.  So I leave the bluetooth on all the time.  But I get no text tones.  This is not acceptable in any way.   I am strongly considering going back to blackberry.  It worked perfectly there.


  • Footplate Level 1 (0 points)

    Interesting.  My 5 has stopped the sound alerts, wherever the iPhone is.  However, I too was surprised that, although the phone sounds through Bluetooth and the handsfree system in the car, the music audio feature will not!


    I have no solution to offer, though.

  • KHowell0419 Level 1 (0 points)

    The reason you are having this issue is not only is your phone Bluetooth but now so is your audio. Any sound your phone makes is sent through Bluetooth to your car. This is why you hear it on your phone calls. if you changed your car to Bluetooth audio you would hear any sound your phone makes. Like alerts, music, etc.

  • akoutalos Level 1 (0 points)

    To stop the alert tones from being sent to the connected bluetooth device, follow the steps below (I have tested them on iPhone 5 running iOS 7.1.2).


    1) Swipe up to display and access the control center.

    2) On the right of the AirDrop cell you should be able to see another cell with the name of your bluetooth device. For example, when my Sony MBH10 bluetooth hands-free device is connected, the name of that cell is "MBH10".

    3) Tap on that cell and you should get a list that allows you to choose where alert tones should be sent to. Select "iPhone". The name of the cell should now become "AirPlay".


    That's it ! Alert tones should now be played by your iPhone instead of being sent to the connected bluetooth device.



  • BabyGbornOnFriday Level 1 (0 points)

    Thank you akoutalos. It worked, I'm so happy been trying to figure this out for months.

  • profmox Level 1 (0 points)

    I was having this issue on my phone, not just in the car, but even in my home. This solution did the trick. Thanks for posting. Note to Apple: This should be more intuitive.

  • Lt. Lash Level 1 (0 points)

    Sorry to revive an old thread.


    While this will do the trick, it also routes all audio to the phone speakers, such as music or game sounds.


    I spoke with Apple support and was told that this issue is either a bug in the iOS system that they haven't addressed yet, or it is how they designed it. My issue with this is, for me, the entire point of having a bluetooth with AD2P is to be able to listen to music or audio from movies through my headset but still be able to hear my ringer if the phone is in my pocket or belt clip.


    The only solution I was given was to go to and request this be possible in a future update either as a feature or a bug fix. If tons of people start requesting this then they should put it in the next iOS update or the following one.


    I had an HTC One M8 prior to getting my iPhone 6 and using the same BT headset I have now, I didn't have to change setting to be able to hear my alert tones from my phone or music through my BT. This shouldn't even be an issue, it should be standard.

  • jacksonfromsurrey Level 1 (0 points)

    An old thread, I know but I thought that if someone searched for a solution like myself they'd come across this.

    The simple solution for me was to connect my iPhone to my car stereo via usb and bluetooth. Of course this only works if your stereo has ipod control, a usb connection and  you're listening to your iPod.

    I'm under the assumption that the reason alerts are silenced is due to safety concerns, a way to prevent people from checking their texts etc. while driving.

  • udance4ever Level 1 (0 points)

    thanks guys for all the input!  this thread has gotta win the award for being the most constructive thread I've seen to date - thanks for just accepting this issue how it is 


    A reminder to file a bug report with Apple - I did it just now and it only takes a minute:



    for the record, the issue still exists in iOS 8.1.3 on an iPhone 5s.


    patience is a virtue


    ps. I forgot to mention that I use my bluetooth speaker in my room all the time for convenience (look ma, no wires!)  so i don't hear alerts just like you don't hear them in the car.

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