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Hello,
I'm the proud owner of a 2021 Forester Touring. It's a fun and comfortable car and we are looking forward to many road trips in our future. I'm also an Apple iPhone user and will be upgrading to the next iPhone which, according to everything I'm reading, will no longer have a cable port. YIKES. Everything I've read says I need a cable for carplay from either an Android or an iPhone to connect.
I will be very disappointed if it isn't possible to use the carplay feature once the phone is upgraded. My wife has an Android phone with dropped the cable last year (Samsung Note).
Thanks for your advice and help.
 

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2014 2.5i Limited CVT
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The tech for wireless carplay and android auto is too new for older stereo and infotainment systems. There will probably end up being a ton of providers offering a USB dongle device to use the non-cable capable devices to a cabled set up.

The other option is to just keep your current phone OR upgrade the stereo head unit (more difficult) to one with wireless carplay and/or android auto.
 

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I wonder if Subaru will provide an update that would enable it wirelessly...

  • If your car supports wireless CarPlay, press and hold the voice command button on your steering wheel. Make sure that your stereo is in wireless or Bluetooth mode. Then on your iPhone, go to Settings > General > CarPlay, tap Available cars, and select your car. Check your car manual for more information.
 

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They possibly may not - and that's all because of the technology involved and how it all works... For example, if it uses, say, the Bluetooth system to operate carplay, then it is possible that they could upgrade the software to use that, if the software update is released by whomever wrote the codecs.... However, if it uses a completely different bit of hardware (beyond the Bluetooth receiver) then it's not a possible solution.

Remember that Subaru does not manufacture the infotainment units - they're supplied by other companies (Fujitsu, Clarion, Harmon Kardon, as examples) and so the hardware tech may just not be there in the units. It's kind of like Blue Ray DVDs... old style DVD players cannot play the new tech of Blue Ray, but Blue Ray will play old style DVDs.

I'm a tech guy so I can give you a fairly certain response that they can "backwards" engineer new tech to use old formats, but the can't "forward" engineer old tech to use new formats. @LVWasHere - the first bit is exactly what this is about and what it means -
  • If your car supports wireless CarPlay
As older models do not support wireless carplay (as it wasn't even commonly available tech just 2 or 3 years ago), it will not work.
 

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Understood... I'm simply curious. 100% agreed, it's all dependant on the manufacturer and if they are willing to code the upgrade vs selling the end user an add-on. Since the infotainment system has wi-fi capabilities, I'm curious if it could be a combination of bluetooth for certain aspects of the communication and then wireless for the rest... again, just curious...
 
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AU MY06 XS Luxury Auto
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You could add Wireless CarPlay and Android Auto to any unit which already has both supported with a cable. The trick is to find the one that works well, minimal lag, not requiring reboots etc.

Here's one (CPLAY2air):

Here's a few more:
 

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@Ken in OKC

Not to be argumentative, but I'm wondering where you read that the new iPhones will not have a cable port?? I did a quick search on that & according to my reading, iPhones will continue to have a lightning port for the next generation at least. (iPhone 13: Coming in 2021, Everything We Know So Far) This is not to say that they will not be "port-less" someday when Apple is more comfortable with MagSafe charging technology.
 

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Not to be argumentative, but I'm wondering where you read that the new iPhones will not have a cable port??
It's likely Apple will go from Lightning port to no port - bypassing USB-C as some may have wanted. Might not be 2021, but it will happen more likely than not. By then, I'm sure there will be ways to connect to a wired CarPlay solution - either by adding a wireless solution to the head unit side, or a wired solution to the iPhone side.
 

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2021 Subaru Forester Sport
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You could add Wireless CarPlay and Android Auto to any unit which already has both supported with a cable. The trick is to find the one that works well, minimal lag, not requiring reboots etc.

Here's one (CPLAY2air):

Here's a few more:
I got the CPLAY2AIR. It doesn't work on my HK system.
 

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There are a variety of dongles available but I haven't seen one yet that officially supports the Subaru systems. I'd be interested also but you'd need wireless charging probably as well.
There are a lot of rumors about no port iPhones but most I have read says there maybe 1 model in the next round with no ports but not all phones. There are too many people with cars that don't support all wireless yet and even when no models come out people can't just buy a new car to support a phone. I'm sure my next car will have to support wireless but that is down the road a ways. If no ports many people wouldn't be able to buy new phones.
 

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I see no problem with plugging the phone in ('19 Crosstrek)
 

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I have the latest iPhone 12 and a 2019 Forester Premium. The phone works on Apple Car Play with or without a wired connection. Mostly, I use it with (using a similar USB cord that you use to charge the phone at home) simply so that I can charge the phone at the same time I am charging it.

If future iPhones come with a charging port and only MagSafe charging (highly unlikely in my opinion) the MagSafe will plug into a Forester USB port just as the current charger does now. The only difference will be the slowness of charging with the MagSafe charger.

Come to think of it, there's no reason I couldn't use the MagSafe charger in the Forester now.
 

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I have the latest iPhone 12 and a 2019 Forester Premium. The phone works on Apple Car Play with or without a wired connection. Mostly, I use it with (using a similar USB cord that you use to charge the phone at home) simply so that I can charge the phone at the same time I am using it.

If future iPhones come with a charging port and only MagSafe charging (highly unlikely in my opinion) the MagSafe will plug into a Forester USB port just as the current charger does now. The only difference will be the slowness of charging with the MagSafe charger.

Come to think of it, there's no reason I couldn't use the MagSafe charger in the Forester now.
 

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You could add Wireless CarPlay and Android Auto to any unit which already has both supported with a cable. The trick is to find the one that works well, minimal lag, not requiring reboots etc.

Here's one (CPLAY2air):

Here's a few more:

OMG THIS IS AWESOME!!!! Thank you for sharing this!!!!
 

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AU MY06 XS Luxury Auto
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Thank you for sharing this!!!!
Check out this one first:

I got the CPLAY2AIR. It doesn't work on my HK system.
I don't know why it wouldn't, but hopefully it's a firmware update away. Note the second video I linked to seems to imply these units use iPhone 6 bits to "fake" the connection to the head unit, and that maybe in the future you'd get ones using the 6s, 7 chips that could be better still.
 

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2021 Subaru Forester Touring
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If what you like about CarPlay is the display on the infotainment screen, then that needs the cable (at least for now, or barring an iOS app that truly enables CarPlay via Bluetooth).

That said, when I first got my 2021, I paired my iPhone XR to the infotainment system with no problem, and was able to play music, podcasts, and use the phone. I finally got a cable in the car after a couple of weeks, and have been using CarPlay since, but my recollection was that the BT connection was solid.
 

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If what you like about CarPlay is the display on the infotainment screen, then that needs the cable (at least for now, or barring an iOS app that truly enables CarPlay via Bluetooth).
Have you looked at the YouTube videos I linked to above (post #6)?
 

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My answer to “what if Apple introduces a phone with no port” is “buy something else.”
 
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