Last week Apple unveiled their latest and greatest iteration of the iPhone. Dubbed iPhone 5, the innovative smartphone delivers some exciting features to Apple fans, including a larger screen, thinner profile and….a new connector. The Ligthning connector replaces the 7-year old 30-pin connector that we have all become accustomed to.
But with these hardware changes, new issues arise for BMW and MINI owners. The new 8-pin setup will not work with the car’s iPod Out functionality.
iPoad Out was introduced in 2010 and enables BMW and MINI infotainment systems to display and control the music playback feature in iPhone and iPod touch in the vehicle’s main display. The iPod navigation menu can be safely operated through the vehicle’s interface controls. iPod features such as custom playlists and Genius, which instantly creates a playlist of songs that go well together from a user’s own library, is made available to BMW and MINI drivers through the vehicle’s main display.
But the new Lightning is a digital connector therefore eliminating the analog video signal required to transmit that display to the screen. Furthermore, the specially created cradles will not be able to accommodate the increased length of iPhone 5.
For Wired Autopia, BMW spokesperson Dave Buchko said that “There is a lot we still don’t know, but BMW has a long history of finding compatibility solutions for iPods and smartphones where none existed.” In the mean time, owners of BMWs and MINIs can still listen to audio over the built-in stereo, along with accessing BMW Apps and Mini Connected features by using the 30-pin to 8-pin adapter provided by Apple.
We expect to see an integrated solution in the near future and new accessories being developed for the iPhone 5. Unfortunately this situation affects a large array of automakers.