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How bad is the media app and iPhone integration?

Discussion in 'Model S: User Interface' started by srthomas21, Mar 15, 2016.

  1. srthomas21

    srthomas21 Member

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    My car will be delivered in a couple of weeks. I didn't spend much time in the car before pulling the trigger and just assumed that Tesla would have a better media experience than a Ford Focus but from what some people have told me it's not that great. Here is what I currently use my phone for in the car:

    I listen to a lot of podcasts. In my current vehicle when I turn the car off the podcast pauses and when I get back in it automatically resumes (same with music)

    Attached via USB can play my playlists and display cover art

    Stream spotify and other streaming services and have cover art display

    Use voice commands to call contacts in my phone without it being attached to the car

    Use Siri to get phone numbers and addresses of businesses

    Is the media app really that bad? If so what does everyone want it to be able to do? Having that giant screen and not utilizing it for a good media experience would be a shame.

    One cool thing I tried when I test drove it was used the voice command and said "find Cubbys" ( a local eatery) and it found all the ones near me and let me pick the location and then routed me to it. I assumed it was using google's database for that?
     
  2. BertL

    BertL Active Member

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    #2 BertL, Mar 16, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2016
    Congrats on your order. There are many threads on these subjects, so a little searching or just scan the UI subform may provide a lot more insight. ;)

    Media Player is problematic, especially IMHO with USB support. Many known issues, as well as a number of acknowledged problems by Tesla that have no ETA for resolution. IMHO, iPhone integration isn't that bad at all. To your questions, here are my answers point-by-point:
    • Your best bet today with MS if you want to keep your place with an audio track as you are listening on an iPhone and then get in, drive, and back out of your MS is to ALWAYS listen and control it via your iPhone. If your iPhone is paired with your MS, when you get in, it can continue playing via Bluetooth. You'll have some control via steering wheel controls to pause/forward/back -- rest, like selecting which podcast to play -- will need to be controlled physically by your iPhone. NOTE: TuneIn has access to some podcasts but not all you are used to with iTunes.
    • There is no hardwired iPod/iPhone support in any Tesla
    • You can stream Spotify, but you'll do it by initiating on your iPhone and using Bluetooth connectivity to play those songs over your MS speakers. I can't say if the MS steering wheel forward/back/pause buttons will or won't work with Spotify -- someone else that uses it will have to respond.
    • Phone directory in MS is only available when your iPhone is paired with it and within range. They are then identical. Once this is in place, you can press the voice button on the steering wheel and say something like "Call Eric" and it will present the single entry on the 17" or if multiples, a multiple selection list to select from. You must take action by selecting an action on the 17" to then place the call or whatever you want to do -- there are no further voice commands to make a selection or actually place the call from that list like offered in other vehicles and interfaces.
    • You could use Siri to get phone number and addresses of businesses, it's possible. Plug your iPhone into the USB port which provides power to it. If you have Siri enabled on your iPhone, it will be listening and if you say "Hey Siri", it will act like you when it's charging ... the challenge is, it does not (presently) display results on the 17" only the iPhone display. There are some variants with this you'll want to play with once you get your MS, and you'll have to work out if you want to use the phone dialer via Siri or the one Tesla provides through it's phone dialer back to the paired directory on your phone... You have some choices, with pros and cons you'll want to explore.
    • Yes, IMHO Media Player has it's problems -- things that are broken or lacking especially surrounding USB support, Gracenotes, and other things. It works OK for the basics so people that only have FM playing in the background will never care -- those of us that care about our audio or perhaps had hardwired MP3 or iPod/iPhones in the past, well, Tesla has a ways to go. As I said above, a number of threads on this subject so just scan the titles in the UI subforum. THIS THREAD may also be of assist in things I found Tesla Infotainment is lacking compared to MBZ & Lexus.
    • Yes, Google is used for "Find Cubbys" in your Nav example, and that works pretty well from my experience. Problem is IMHO, Tesla Nav does not go the next step to use Google's database for the rest of the POI info that it could, so this becomes a deficiency compared to Tesla's competition.
     
  3. srthomas21

    srthomas21 Member

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    Thanks for your detailed response! I wish it could just mirror the iPhone on the big screen to they you control it that way. Maybe that's kind of want car play does.
     
  4. BertL

    BertL Active Member

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    Elon has at least twice in recent months said the direction is to mirror ONLY the display of an iPhone or Android device... Other threads on that, but many of us don't believe that means CarPlay or the ability to use the 17" touchscreen for any physical interaction.
     
  5. ucla107

    ucla107 Member

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    This is great... I spent some amount and the MS when I test drove by have not pulled the trigger yet. For the last week, I've been going back and forth the MS and the '16 Prius 4 Touring which has 80% of the MS "cool" features including auto parking, just not the full blown auto pilot... And of course it doesn't have the "Tesla factor"... It really now comes down to all the nitty gritty stuff like how the media, navi, etc works.
     
  6. srthomas21

    srthomas21 Member

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    Interesting, mirroring without interaction seems pretty useless. What would the purpose be?
     
  7. BertL

    BertL Active Member

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    IMHO it's a stop gap because Elon does not likely want to go the CarPlay and Android Auto route for a number of reasons discussed in other threads. Tesla has to do something or it's high level checklist against competition will be incomplete. Visually seeing what's on the phone would at least allow things like alternate map/nav apps (Google or Apple Maps), real album art for those that want to use bluetooth audio directly with their device, or e.g. Siri displayed responses to be displayed in addition to the bluetooth audio we already have -- all better than what we have now; somewhat better perhaps than implementing Siri Eyes Free; but IMHO no where close to an actual CarPlay and Android Auto implementation.
     
  8. BertL

    BertL Active Member

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    There are many positives of MS over other vehicles, but if the Infotainment details matter, check out that link I provided back in post #2 -- especially the 2nd half of that long post. It will widen your eyes substantially. I'm a very detailed guy and spent man-weeks studying as much as I could on MS, so thought I was making a very informed decision of the pros/cons and tradeoffs, but after taking delivery, found I missed a lot of little things I expected would just be in MS that I've come to expect in previous vehicles for years. It all comes down to what's most important to you and which tradeoffs make more sense for your situation. I've never found any vehicle that met 100% of my desires. Good luck with your decision.
     
  9. ucla107

    ucla107 Member

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    Thank you!
     
  10. bollar

    bollar Disgruntled Member

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    I don't think direct mirroring will happen, mainly because of the safety issues that creates. I'm sure that all of the people currently annoyed that they can't display videos on the 17" will be overjoyed and foolish enough to mirror their movies. I'm also concerned that will take the driver's eyes off the road as they try to manipulate the smartphone.

    I still believe CarPlay / Android Auto are the right solutions, as it's a one-time development effort that leverages Apple / Google's experience. It also creates a potential retrofit product Tesla can sell to Classic owners.
     
  11. Gizmotoy

    Gizmotoy Active Member

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    In some states its outright illegal to even provide a capability that could be exploited to provide video to front-seat passengers, even if that wasn't the intent of the feature. This was discussed in depth in one of the other threads, but at least on the iPhone, it's not possible to exclude video from mirroring. It's possible, but easily-defeated on Android. I don't see any way, legally, Tesla goes with a solution that simply mirrors the phone to the center display.
     

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