iPhone 2.02 doesn’t fix address book sync with BMW iDrive

[Also check the other post covering this with several hundred comments – iPhone 2.0 update breaks BMW iDrive contact/address book syncing!]

UPDATE – Sorry guys and girls, it looks like a was a little premature on this one. My contacts DID all show up on the iDrive screen and I scrolled through, jumped from A-N-W-etc and I came in to get the camera for a few shots for this article. When I went back out, my iPhone paired but after a long wait screen there were NO contacts shown! I removed both pairings, powered off the car and the iPhone and tried again but still nothing. I then updated my friends brand new 3G to 2.02 and tried syncing that (which has never been seen by the car before) and it paired but still no contact sync.

For those of you who have been experiencing problems trying to get your iPhone to sync contacts with your BMW iDrive here’s the good news you’ve been waiting for….iPhone 2.02 has finally fixed the issue! [or maybe not, I’ve just been out and tried it again and it’s not syncing any contacts now, I’ve deleted both pairings, repaired and rebooted the iPhone and going to try again and see if that makes any difference, I thought it was too good to be true!]

I have just taken my original iPhone updagted to 2.02 out to my car (2006 BMW E60 M5) and am pleased to say that after a 30-60second wait all my contacts appeared on the iDrive screen as they used to before iPhone 2.0 update.

I know that Chrysler owners trying to pair the iPhone to uConnect had similar problems, as did some Mercedes, Jeep, LandRover, etc owners. If you’ve still got problems or found that iPhone 2.02 update has solved your problems please leave a comment below to assist others. Reports are coming back already that it’s not solved connection issues for those with uConnect systems.

31 Replies to “iPhone 2.02 doesn’t fix address book sync with BMW iDrive”

  1. I have a 2007 750 (US Spec) and purchased my iPhone 3G in Sep 08. I updated the sw when I initialize the phone with iTunes. I was able to pair the phone to the car in 30 seconds. I have never had a problem.

  2. Potential workaround for BMW users where contacts do not sync to address book until fix provided by apple or BMW. I have a Nokia 6230i that worked fine in the BMW before I bought the Iphone 3G. I reinstalled the 6230i in the snap adapter and paired it again with the BMW I-drive. I have a prepaid sim card in this phone so I can make outbound calls from address book when driving. Any incoming calls to my Iphone 3G (2.1 s/w) get picked up by the car I-drive bluetooth. Both Nokia & Iphone are paired with the BMW I-drive with Nokia the primary pairing. Works in my 2006 5 series.

  3. Updated – 2.1 DID fix my issues. At first it did not seem to, but now all my contacts are showing up, and the phone itself seems noticeable faster.
    I deleted my exchange profile AND my pairing. Then rebuilt my exchange profile and resynched. THEN rebuilt the bluetooth pairing. All contacts appeared immediately and seem to ALL be there which was not the case before.

  4. 2.1 does not appear to work as well as 2.01 (arrgh.)
    I have ’08 335 with idrive.
    iphone 3g did not work with 2.0, then worked with 2.01 although some address listings did not show.
    now with 2.1 (downloaded today), the address book does not work at all. So, I took a step forward and now a step back.
    aggravating to have a 50k car, and a 200 phone will not work.

  5. I received a reply from BMW:
    “Thank you for your email regarding the Apple iPhone 3G,
    Further to our conversation yesterday, BMW are working on a software upgarde that will allow the Apple iPhone 3G to function with our vehicles. Any updates to the compatibility of the Apple 3G iPhone will be shown immediately on our website a http://www.bmw.co.uk/bluetooth
    The Service Department at your nearest BMW Approved Dealership will be able to offer you further advice on the availability and cost of having a hardware or software upgrade completed once it is available. The upgrade is chargeable as technology has moved forward since your vehicle was manufactured. The type of upgrade required will depend on the age of your vehicle and the Bluetooth platform used’.

    On the telephone he told me that they were hopeful for October for the fix – but was not sure if the fix will be for 2.0.1 or 2.0.2 – he said that they had not even seen 2.1 let alone started to develop a software fix yet.

  6. anyone have luck with the 2.1 FW… this problem is really pissing me off. I have 2007 328i coupe iDrive with progam v25 and no contacts with 2.0.2

  7. I feel like crying. 🙁

    E90 330i SE with Progman v27 installed Sept 07.
    Same outcome as with v2.0.2- no phonebook entries are available.
    Access to phonebook contacts is faster & backup is faster as well, but that’s no consolation.


  8. @KevinG – Good work, it’s nice when persistence pays off! I’ve always been told “its the squeaky wheel gets the oil” and in most cases this is true.

    So a fix for 2.0 will be out next month, if this is true that’s great news, but, like pretty much every other iPhone user out there, nobody is running 2.0 anymore as it was too laggy/buggy and everyone went to 2.01, and that was even worse so everyone cheered when they brought out 2.02!

    I’m hoping that whatever Apple changed regards bluetooth between 1.1.4 and 2.0 hasn’t changed again in 2.01 and 2.02 so that perhaps BMWs fix for 2.0 will work with 2.01 and 2.02….oh but then the BIG bug fix from Apple in the form of iPhone 2.1 is out tomorrow and everybody’s going to jump on-board and upgrade to that, then BMW will bring out a fix for iPhone 2.0, nobody will be able to downgrade from 2.1 to 2.0 and were back where we started 🙁

    Scoopz (Admin)

  9. I have just had a very interesting conversation with the Bluetooth specialist at BMW (persistence pays off!) He told me that the fix for 2.0 will be available in October and dealers will be able to upload the software immediately.
    They have not looked at 2.0.1 or 2.0.2 and he advises that I do not upgrade until they do. This is a total pain because I am on 2.0.2 now!
    He also confirmed that this is a BMW issue because of the complexity of the Bluetooth system.
    I suggested that better information on the BMW web site may be helpful.

  10. I find the comments from BMW via Bob Will to be very interesting and misleading. This is clearly a BMW software issue (and Mercedes by the way). They need to update the software for the Bluetooth module because it works in a different way to others (see my post above re: Ford).
    BMW have always been slow to respond to customer needs, I suggest we all keep emailing BMW to keep the pressure on.
    In the posting above they are trying to shift the blame onto Apple – this is appalling as it is clearly a BMW issue.

  11. @Bob Will – Excellent information, thanks for posting that.

    The information published on our website was in relation the first generation Apple iPhone and is not relevant to the new Apple iPhone 3G.

    I notice that they’ve said the first generation iPhone is on the compatibility list not the 3G version which is quite true, I assume you emailed them asking about the 3G compatibility? Then they spend some time skirting around the fact that software updates on any phones can prevent things working. Basically they’re trying to say the original iPhone up to v1.1.4 works and after 2.0 is not likely to work.

    What’s annoying is that the update from 1.1.4 to 2.0 whilst not compulsory is irreversible! I understand that the iPhone 3G will only run v2.0 or greater but they should allow owners of the original iPhone to downgrade to v1.1.4 until this is resolved.

    Scoopz (Admin)

    PS – I’ve placed a duplicate of your comment on another blog entry on here (iPhone 2.0 update breaks BMW iDrive contact/address book syncing!) which has 230+ comments and several people watching that thread for their information, jsut in case they don’t spot it on this post.

  12. Here is the official response from BMW UK, hope it helps………..

    Thank you for your email to BMW Customer Information regarding the compatibility of the Apple 3G iPhone.

    We have not yet received information as to the compatibility of the Apple iPhone 3G mobile phone.  As this phone was released at the end of July it is still going through extensive testing by our engineers in Germany.  Every mobile phone is thoroughly tested and only when found to be compatible will it be added to our Bluetooth list.

    The information published on our website was in relation the first generation Apple iPhone and is not relevant to the new Apple iPhone 3G.  As BMW work closely with Apple, we would imagine that a software level to ensure compatibility will be developed in the future for the 7 Series as quickly as possible. 

    The compatibility of a handset is reliant on the software installed on the phone by the phone manufacturer.  The software version then determines how the handset utilises the Bluetooth protocol.  For a handset to be approved the software on the phone must allow uninterrupted pairing and phone book transfer.

    Throughout the life cycle of a mobile phone, refreshed or new versions of software may be released into the market by the phone manufacturer.  If it is then found to be compatible, it will be added to the listing on the Bluetooth website.

    At this current time I am unable to confirm if the software update will guarantee the transfer of the contacts list.  Any future updates to the compatibility of the Apple 3G iPhone will be shown on our website a http://www.bmw.co.uk/bluetooth

    If we can be of further assistance to you, please do not hesitate to contact us again.

    Yours sincerely

    BMW Group UK
    Stuart Mitchell
    Customer Information Advisor
    Ellesfield Avenue
    Bracknell RG12 8TA

  13. Interestingly I tried my Iphone in my wife’s Ford Mondeo which has a Bluetooth setup. The phone works exactly as it did pre 3g! This offers more proof that this is a BM software issue.

  14. I have had a chat with my local BMW dealer who has spoken with BMW UK and Apple. He has confirmed that the software fix from BMW is on its way and should be available for upload by dealers within 2 months – he also said that every time a BMW is serviced the software level is upgraded to the latest which is something I did not know.
    Regarding 2.1 -he advised that I do not upgrade as this may create more problems .

  15. I’ve just come across an interesting article on bimmernav site about Bluetooth modules on the BMW at:

    The article covers not only the hardware side but also the software side too. According to the article there are 13 revisions of the BMW ULF Bluetooth module. It looks like there where 4 revisions in 2006. This might possibly explain why some BMW owners where having better luck then others, with cars manufactured in that same year of ’06? I’ve see else ware some guy had no problems with his ’06 5 series, with pushing contacts from the iPhone to the car, yet my dads 5 series will only just pair with the phone.
    Any way just a thought, relating to KevinG comment on BMW Bluetooth module.

  16. @KevinG – Thanks for the info!

    My car (2006 M5) decided to die on me two days ago so I’m currently in a loan car (2008 5-series) and my iPhone works perfectly with the iDrive in the loan car – pairs / connects / syncs contacts / voice dial / the lot, and it syncs 500+ contacts fast too!

    I’m going to use the loan car to demonstrate to my dealer that there is clearly an issue with older BMW iDrive software and see what they say. I’ve held off on getting an update for my iDrive because I was pretty sure that Apple could fix it with a software update. I’m now at the point where I don’t care where the fix comes from (Apple or BMW) just so long as there is a fix.

    I’m tempted to get the iDrive updated under warranty whilst my car is with the dealer for the next few days but then I’m also tempted to wait and see if iPhone 2.1 which comes out on Friday will fix things all on its own?

    I’m going to be out the country from Friday morning until Monday evening so I won’t be able to test iPhone 2.1 myself so I’ll be keeping an eye on the comments on this thread and the other thead here for user comments.

    Scoopz (Admin)

  17. I spoke with BMW in the UK and was told that the BMW engineers are working on a fix to the Bluetooth module that will be available ASAP. They said that all what would be needed is to take your car in to a dealer who would update the car software. They will alert people via the BMW website when this is is ready.

  18. Just purhased an iPhone 3G last week. First attempt to connect the bluetooth to my 2007 Z4 resulted in the phone freezing and then going blank with a white screen. Subsequent attempts and rebooting have allowed it to pair but the calls can’t be answered. I’ve read hundreds of emails about bluetooth connectivity issues – and Apple tech support trying to pretend that they have never had this problem before. Does BMW need to upgrade the drivers on the bluetooth in the car or is this an Apple problem?

  19. @Matt:
    I’ve removed your email address from your post so that the nasty spam-bots that trawl the net don’t pick it up.

    With the BMW’s and iDrive, there is no set default PIN for bluetooth like there is for the Nokia Car Kits, Landrovers, Mercedes, etc.

    When you start the pairing process from the Settings Menu and your iPhone finds the car (it will usually be called BMW######, where ###### represents the last few digits of your vehicle’s VIN number). When you connect and your iPhone asks you for a PIN number you can pick ANY number you like, you simply have to re-enter the same number on the iDrive when asked. [NOTE – you will need to go to settings on the iDrive, Phone Settings, Bluetooth, Pair New Device or similar depending on your year and iDrive version]

    I tend to use 0000, but I have used 1234, 123, 00 etc in the past. Once you’ve entered the code on the iPhone the iDrive should then say a device is asking for permission to connect, accept this and then it will ask for your PIN, this is the number you just chose earlier.

    Hope that helps.

    Scoopz (Admin)

  20. My original iPhone was working perfectly with the complete address book on my 2007 523i but the moment i upgraded to software ver 2 the address book shows “No entries found”. Very annoying

  21. I have a 2006 750Li and Iphone 2.0.2

    Every bluetooth i have ever used the pin was 0000 for some reason this does not work on my car.

    I tried the basics 1234 0000 1111 1212 etc…. nothing is working

    can anyone help me?

  22. I have an original iPhone and it always connected with my 2008 528i and stayed connected. However, after I updated the software on my iPhone it never stays connected with my car. It’s very annoying and frustrating!

  23. I have a BMW 2007 530xi and an 2007 X5. Running an iPhone 3G with version 2.0.2. I have a significant problem with echo in the X5, its a little better in the 530xi. Periodically I loose Bluetooth connection in the 530xi. Yesterday, when I started the car, the iPhone would not even make a Bluetooth connection to the car. I did a power off reset on the phone (holding down the power button and home button). When the phone reset, it connected to the car via bluetooth. I never had any Bluetooth connection problems with my Motorola RAZR.

  24. I have 335ci with idrive. Mine did NOT work with 3g 2.0 – no synch and lost connections. Then I updated to 2.01 and the bluetooth is now working well. I thought the synch was working too, but I find that sporadic contacts are missing. Cant find reason for it. A-Z is all populated, but some are missing in spots. Note – I do have over 2,000 contacts, so not a typical user.
    I have NOT updated to 2.02 yet.

  25. I have iPhone 2.0.2 and 2006 BMW 750. It is not pairing. It paired with 2.0.1. suddenly a few days ago However upgrading to 2.0.2 it is back to where I was before, no pairing.

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