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Question: iTunes automatically starts playing when iPhone 5 (w iOS 7.0.2) is connected to car radio via an Apple cable

I'm using an iPhone 5 with iOS 7.0.2, regardless it is the most recent update


When I plug my phone into my car radio's USB port (Apple cable, not knock off) iTunes starts to play the very first song in my large iTunes library.


I plug into the USB port to charge it and to connect the phone to radio in order to use hands free audio.


I have tried two or three different cables, it happens with all cables and again all are actual Apple cables.


I do not recall this happening with iOs 6 or at least as much.

With iOs 7 it happens every f***ing 😠 time. Extremely annoying and dangerous (I may get so frustrated by this that one day I might just smash the phone or the car radio :-) to the equipment.


I have to unlock my phone, go to iTunes and pause or stop the song/iTunes. ➖➖

The app does not show as being open, that is why I have to go iTunes itself, the old fashioned way, so to speak. 😕


It sometimes happens when I plug my headset in (also Apple brand, the basic ones that come with the iPad and iPhones) to phone and have tried the two different ones I have. It only seems to happen if my phone is not in use (i.e. I am on a call and switch to the headset it does not happen)


Interestingly this issue with the headphones and iTunes automatically starting happened more with iOS 6 and than with iOS 7. Ironically the opposite is true with the car radio, USB port cable, charging and iPhone — it rarely happened with iOS 6.0 but with iOS 7.0 it always happens.


I cannot seem to find a fix here but I do see I am not the only one with this annoying issue.


Please someone (APPLE!) figure out a fix. ➕ℹ➕


PS I have even considered NOT having any of my music on my phone — none at all — which not only would solve the problem (I would hope!) but be extremely inconvenient and defeating the purpose of only having an iPhone vs an iPhone and an iPod.


PPS - I probably left out something really relevant, like what color is my car 😝, so if I did, please let me know.

iPhone 5, iOS 7.0.2, iTunes

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May 5, 2014 11:48 PM in response to sdkatsh In response to sdkatsh

RE: Music starts playing automatically when iPhone connects via Bluetooth in a car.

(In my case, it was always iTunes Radio)


I found a fix that works for my iPhone 5 running the lastest iOS 7.1.1


Go to: Settings > Cellular >

(Scroll Down until you see USE CELLULAR DATA FOR:)


This is a list of all the Apps and Utilities that can use cellular data.

Keep scrolling through these until you see Music and switch it OFF.


If you're like me and only use Bluetooth and iPhone in your car to listen to what you choose, such as Pandora orSpotify, this will work. Both Pandora and Spotify are third party apps that need to be launched to work, unlike the built in Music app that seems to have a mind of it's own.

Question marked as Helpful

Dec 25, 2013 7:48 AM in response to sdkatsh In response to sdkatsh

I have an iPhone 5 and every time I get into my car, as soon as my iPhone connects to the bluetooth or if I connect the USB cable, the music starts blaring through the car stereo, even if the radio was off. If I am using any of the navigation apps on my phone (google maps, waze, apple maps), and I happen to be lucky enough to have the voice directions working (that's consistently inconsistent), the music will frequently start by itself during navigation, even if I didn't turn the music on. Sometimes the music and navigation voice over will compete with each other at the same time. Sometimes they both go totally silent. Sometimes I'll hear only music. Sometimes only the voice directions. And if make or receive a phone call while the navigation is working, as soon as the phone call ends, the music will always take over again, even if I didn't have the music on prior to. I've checked and re-checked every setting on my phone, in my apps, in my car, and followed all of the suggestions I've found online (note to Apple - there are tons of posts on this topic), and nothing works.

It seems like there should be an easy software fix for this, or at the very least, options to:

  • prevent the music from starting automatically every time you connect with a cable or bluetooth (insanely annoying)
  • allow voice directions to temporarily mute music, should one choose to be listenting to music and navigating at the same time
  • just listen to voice direction - no music!

Better yet, how about just provide options to let the end-user decide when to listen to music.

For a product that is supposed to be "intuitively easly" and/or "just works", this level of dysfunction shouldn't be acceptable. Come on Apple - what are you doing to fix this???

Question marked as Helpful

Dec 12, 2013 10:36 AM in response to sdkatsh In response to sdkatsh

I have the same problem with my iPad mini. iOS 7.0.4. Automatically starts playing the same song any time I plug into my car thru USB with my Apple sync cable. If I'm in Spotify, the itunes song will play at the same time. Not easy to stop, since iTunes doesn't appear to be open in multitasking. So I have to open it, navigate to Now Playing, and stop playback. Super annoying! I can't find any setting to disable this, and it only happens in my car.

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Apr 6, 2015 12:31 PM in response to Galeur In response to Galeur

Apple has to know this problem exists. A little while back U2 released a free album that they automatically added to your itunes account. Everytime I got in my car iTunes started playing U2. It caused kind of an uproar that they had to release a U2 album removal tool lol.


I just got a new phone and I downloaded a ringtone pack So that is playing automatically right now which led me here. It's a little worse than Jackson 5.


It is crazy to think I have to delete this thing I just brought to fix this. But it's worth it. I guess no more purchases from itunes lol.

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Apr 8, 2014 3:57 PM in response to sdkatsh In response to sdkatsh

I've wanted to smash my phone every time I get on the car when it starts playing Jackson 5 ABC. I want to throw up every time I hear the first ten seconds of that GD song. I prefer spotlight to iTunes So what I have done to stop this is sign out of my Apple ID on my phone. It's the best I can do. It doesn't play that horrid song any longer.

Question marked as Helpful

Dec 6, 2013 9:28 AM in response to sdkatsh In response to sdkatsh

Hey sdkatsh,


I have the same issue as well, it honestly is the most frustrating thing. I have a iphone 4s on 7.0.4, and the moment i plug the phone in using a usb (apple usb cable) to the car, it begins playing the first song in my itunes (music). I prefer listening to my music through soundcloud, however the itunes stops and overrides soundcloud. I dont know what to do, no matter how many times I press pause on the itunes song, and press play on the soundcloud song, it just overrides it and presumes playing the first song in my itunes list.


What can we do about this? APPLE NEEDS TO SOLVE THIS!!!!!!

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Question marked as Helpful

Dec 6, 2013 9:28 AM in response to sdkatsh In response to sdkatsh

Hey sdkatsh,


I have the same issue as well, it honestly is the most frustrating thing. I have a iphone 4s on 7.0.4, and the moment i plug the phone in using a usb (apple usb cable) to the car, it begins playing the first song in my itunes (music). I prefer listening to my music through soundcloud, however the itunes stops and overrides soundcloud. I dont know what to do, no matter how many times I press pause on the itunes song, and press play on the soundcloud song, it just overrides it and presumes playing the first song in my itunes list.


What can we do about this? APPLE NEEDS TO SOLVE THIS!!!!!!

Dec 6, 2013 9:28 AM

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Question marked as Helpful

Dec 12, 2013 10:36 AM in response to sdkatsh In response to sdkatsh

I have the same problem with my iPad mini. iOS 7.0.4. Automatically starts playing the same song any time I plug into my car thru USB with my Apple sync cable. If I'm in Spotify, the itunes song will play at the same time. Not easy to stop, since iTunes doesn't appear to be open in multitasking. So I have to open it, navigate to Now Playing, and stop playback. Super annoying! I can't find any setting to disable this, and it only happens in my car.

Dec 12, 2013 10:36 AM

Reply Helpful (7)

Dec 18, 2013 6:11 AM in response to sdkatsh In response to sdkatsh

Well I havent figured out a way to make it resume properly but if you create a file caled AAAA and have the track title be AAA and i found a free blank mp3 file, it doesnt fix the problem of it resuming but it does fix the problem of you wanting to throw your phone out the window after hearing the first minute of the same track a few hundred times

Dec 18, 2013 6:11 AM

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Question marked as Helpful

Dec 25, 2013 7:48 AM in response to sdkatsh In response to sdkatsh

I have an iPhone 5 and every time I get into my car, as soon as my iPhone connects to the bluetooth or if I connect the USB cable, the music starts blaring through the car stereo, even if the radio was off. If I am using any of the navigation apps on my phone (google maps, waze, apple maps), and I happen to be lucky enough to have the voice directions working (that's consistently inconsistent), the music will frequently start by itself during navigation, even if I didn't turn the music on. Sometimes the music and navigation voice over will compete with each other at the same time. Sometimes they both go totally silent. Sometimes I'll hear only music. Sometimes only the voice directions. And if make or receive a phone call while the navigation is working, as soon as the phone call ends, the music will always take over again, even if I didn't have the music on prior to. I've checked and re-checked every setting on my phone, in my apps, in my car, and followed all of the suggestions I've found online (note to Apple - there are tons of posts on this topic), and nothing works.

It seems like there should be an easy software fix for this, or at the very least, options to:

  • prevent the music from starting automatically every time you connect with a cable or bluetooth (insanely annoying)
  • allow voice directions to temporarily mute music, should one choose to be listenting to music and navigating at the same time
  • just listen to voice direction - no music!

Better yet, how about just provide options to let the end-user decide when to listen to music.

For a product that is supposed to be "intuitively easly" and/or "just works", this level of dysfunction shouldn't be acceptable. Come on Apple - what are you doing to fix this???

Dec 25, 2013 7:48 AM

Reply Helpful (9)

Jan 26, 2014 7:38 PM in response to sdkatsh In response to sdkatsh

Why don't we ever see responses from APPLE on these posts. Whenever I search to solve a problem, we seem to all be in the same boat, complaining and frustrated with no assistance or acknowledgement for this company. It is so annoying and quite discouraging after spending a lot of cash on their products. Once they get your money, you're on your own after 90 days unless you fork over more for basic questions on the phone. If it wasn't for other users, we'd have no solutions, yet I still have a low rate of problem solving here. The company is terrible for customer service. It's a shame because they were much better years ago. I will not be getting another iphone, that's for sure. Just had to vent once again...still no solution to this problem though.

Jan 26, 2014 7:38 PM

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Jan 26, 2014 7:43 PM in response to petergood66 In response to petergood66

Because this is a user to user support forum. Apple does not participate in this forum. Since you do not describe a problem, then it is difficult to suggest a solution.


I'm sorry if you have spent your time waiting for a response from Apple, and that you seem disappointed with answers from users. You won't see to many with an attitude like, "low rate of problem solving here". People will not want to interact with you that way. Generally when people volunteer their time to answering questions, people are generally a bit kinder.

Jan 26, 2014 7:43 PM

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Feb 20, 2014 6:01 PM in response to sdkatsh In response to sdkatsh

My solution for this bug (well, not a cure, but how I deal with it).


I hope this helps.


I have the same prob on iPad mini, OS7. Here is what works for me on my unit.


Music starts only when I use a headset equipped with a PAUSE/PLAY SWITCH for pause/play, and ONLY when itunes is open in the background, and a PARTIALLY PLAYED song is open and paused. If the last song has been COMPLETED and iTunes is open, it does not play on its own.


When a song sits paused on the open iTunes in the b/g, iPad seems to sense the switch circuit in the jack as PLAY when I plug it in, and that song plays in the background. When I hit the PAUSE/PLAY switch, it PAUSES the song.


If iTunes App has been quit, when I plug in (NOT open in the background) all is normal. It will not play music by simply plugging in, nor when I launch iTunes, until I select a song and hit the switch.


When I use a headset WITHOUT a PAUSE/PLAY switch, everything is normal.


It seems the iPad senses the switch's circuit at plugin and reads it to play what's open in the background.


Thats what my unit does. Hope this helps.

Feb 20, 2014 6:01 PM

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Feb 28, 2014 4:57 AM in response to sdkatsh In response to sdkatsh

AUGH!!! I love LOVE Genesis - fave band of all time. But now, thank you APPLE I can't get "Abacab" out of my head and whenever I want to charge my iPhone 4 in the car, I have to turn down the volume, lest I become psychotic and throw Phil Collins and Mike Rutherford out the window along with 800 other artists and the photo chronicles of my children's lives thus far. Please help!!

Feb 28, 2014 4:57 AM

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Question: iTunes automatically starts playing when iPhone 5 (w iOS 7.0.2) is connected to car radio via an Apple cable