Apple claims its CarPlay software makes driving safer and more convenient by reducing distractions, but not everyone agrees. AAA recently concluded using a system like CarPlay (or Google’s rival system, Android Auto) reduces a driver’s reaction time more than booze or pot. Viewed in this light, there are circumstances in which disabling CarPlay makes sense. It’s a relatively straightforward process that we’ve detailed below.
There are two components to CarPlay’s functionality: The car and the iPhone itself. Settings on both must be configured to disable CarPlay and stop any auto-play services from running any time you plug your phone into your car. Apple hasn’t made it immediately obvious that disabling CarPlay is even a thing, it’s in the company’s best interest that you use the system as often as possible, but it is possible with a few extra steps.
Adjusting iPhone settings
When the iPhone is first plugged into a USB port of a vehicle that supports CarPlay, the device will alert the user with a pop-up on the screen that asks if the phone should allow CarPlay to be active while the screen is locked. It might seem like saying “no” here will disable CarPlay, but it only blocks the system from connecting when the device is locked. To disable CarPlay from the phone itself, you will need to follow the steps below:
iPhones running iOS 13
- Open Settings
- Choose Screen Time
- Choose Content & Privacy Restrictions
- Enable restrictions and then choose Allowed Apps
- Disable CarPlay
iPhones running older versions of iOS
- Opening Settings
- Choose General
- Choose Restrictions
- Enable restrictions and enter a passcode
- Toggle CarPlay option to Off
It is also possible to temporarily disable CarPlay from the iPhone. To do this, select CarPlay in the Settings menu under General, choose the vehicle currently in use, and opt to disable/remove it from the list. This change won’t permanently remove the device’s ability to connect. But it will require the user to approve the vehicle for playback when you plug the phone in the next time. If the user opts against accepting CarPlay, the phone will only charge each time you plug it in. The ability to disable CarPlay is handy for a range of scenarios.
On the vehicle side of the equation, many automakers have included an option to disable Apple CarPlay. Ford, for example, has made it easy to switch off the functionality in its vehicles. The Sync 3 system in many new Ford models lets users disable CarPlay by choosing Preferences and then selecting the currently connected iPhone. The system will then allow the user to disable that phone’s CarPlay abilities.
Many other manufacturers approach this differently. If you have a Jaguar, it will ask you how you want your phone to interact with the infotainment system once they plug it in. You can either choose to connect with CarPlay or sync music and phone calls using another technique. If you prefer, you can also have the system remember what you selected. This comes in handy when you want it to remain in place for longer than one vehicle trip. Sadly, there isn’t a model method for disabling car play. We suggest contacting your automobile manufacturer directly to obtain more information on how to do this properly. It may also be wise to browse through your user manual, as it may include information that can provide you with a detailed step-by-step guide.
Fortunately, once you disable CarPlay, you can get it back. You can rest assured that you’ll always be able to undo the disable process. It’s also important to note that enabling or disabling does not hinder Carplay’s quality of effectiveness. You can enjoy switching it on and off as much as you want. You don’t need to worry about any drawbacks or consequences. If you have a self-proclaimed DJ for a passenger, you can quickly disable CarPlay. Once they leave your vehicle, you can turn it back on and enjoy the songs you actually wanted to hear.
It takes some practice, but you’ll get the hang of it eventually. Once you learn all of CarPlay’s benefits and features, you’ll be able to take advantage of it in no time.
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