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Discussion Starter #1
OK, I have been on here a while but haven't posted all that much.

I have a 2011 1.4 MA G and I love almost everything about it. Like many others on here, I feel the standard stereo setup is such a missed opportunity. I have only USB input (no aux, fine no problem), and the navigation option meaning the pop up screen. I love the pop up element to it, I think it looks really quite smart. However, that is where my love for the ICE in this car ends. The controls and buttons are less than intuitive, albeit you can get used to them after a while. The radio is next to useless, picking up just a couple of channels. The navigation is a pain, with data entry taking forever and the actual display being OK I suppose. I know the graphics can be updated, so I'll do that, and I need to update the firmware.

So here is the weird bits. I currently have an iPhone XS, which I have paired with the bluetooth. Only just paired it, so not sure of its long term viability, but definitely had issues with my previous phone, a 6S stayng connected during calls. Very annoyingly, the audio out would switch from the car speakers, to the phone's speaker, and not the loud speaker at that, caused by bluetooth disconnecting. It happened every time, so I'll see if this works. At the moment, I have no music on the XS, but do have podcasts and Planet Rock app, both of which work fine via USB on the 6S, and the screen would display either the name of the podcast or Planet Rock. Neither of these appear to work on XS. When plugged into the USB and connected via Bluetooth, using steering wheel controls I can press Menu - Media Play - Advanced USB Options - Play Anything. At this point, I get an audio warning telling me no music files, which is to be expected due to lack of music. However, I can then play Planet Rock or podcasts through the cars speakers, just as I could before except it doesn't display any information, and the display continues to show the radio. It's really weird and I can't figure it out.

The ideal solution will be to find a device that allows me to put Apple Car Play on that pop-up screen. I don't need it to be touchscreen, I'd be happy using either the up/down/left/right on the front of the stereo with the OK click wheel, or SW controls (you can get a bluetooth 4 way select button that is sticky). I don't want to go aftermarket because they look a bit weird in the dash, and then the pop screen is completely useless. The other option is a Raspberry Pi, and display the output on the pop-up screen, maybe with a toggle to split the input so I can either have the RPi or the standard car input. I'd also need to find a way to power the Pi so that it starts and turns off with the ignition, but without killing the SD card. There are solutions to this, but they seem more involved than I want at the moment. Also along this vein, I have a spare button at the end where the bi-xenon headlight button would be - I really like the idea of using that to turn on/off the RPi, especially if I can put a tiny LED in to show it's on.

Alternatively, pull out the current stereo, reflash it somehow and allow CarPlay like that.

There has to be a way to do this, to find a good use for that screen. Apple or Google Maps are far superior to the car's built in system and would be great on that screen. Any thoughts, suggestions or links to useful threads that might be able to help me would be much appreciated. I will update this with any progress I make along the way. Thanks in advance.
 
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