On Android 7.1.1, the Nexus 6P and 5X have an in-car Bluetooth issue unresolved since October


A large number of Google Nexus 6P and Nexus 5X owners are reporting that, after updating their phones to Android 7.1.1 Nougat, they've stumbled upon an issue affecting in-car Bluetooth functionality.

For most users, the Nexus 6P and Nexus 5X either won't connect to in-car Bluetooth systems, or they connect, but phone calls can not be made via the car's audio system. This seems to happen with most car models, regardless of maker.

As mentioned in the lengthy discussions found at the Google Product Forums and the Android Issue Tracker website (see the source links below), the issue has been around since late October, when Google released the first 7.1.1 Nougat developer preview. Users were hoping that the problem would be fixed with the arrival of the January security update, but that wasn't the case.

Google may be planning to finally fix this Bluetooth bug with the launch of Android 7.1.2. Unfortunately, there is no word on when this new version of Nougat is expected to arrive, though we hope it will happen in the near future.

sources: Android Issue Tracker, Google Product Forums

Related phones

Nexus 6P
  • Display 5.7" 1440 x 2560 pixels
  • Camera 12.3 MP / 8 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 810, Octa-core, 2000 MHz
  • Storage 128 GB
  • Battery 3450 mAh(23h talk time)
Nexus 5X
  • Display 5.2" 1080 x 1920 pixels
  • Camera 12.3 MP / 5 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 808, Hexa-core, 1800 MHz
  • Storage 32 GB
  • Battery 2700 mAh(20h talk time)

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20 Comments

1. av911 unregistered

The beauty of stock Android?

2. JC557

Posts: 1925; Member since: Dec 07, 2011

Yup, they have this problem of leaving unresolved issues in the newer versions of Android, make them worse or introduce new ones altogether (Google Play Services tendency to cause a wakelock). Thankfully for Nexus owners some crafty dev over at XDA can maybe find a fix or workaround to the problem until Google and their devs get off their f**king asses and address any problems brought up by the users instead of waving it away and their fanboys tell you that the problem lies with you. Maybe instead of adding bloat and bikeshedding the damn code they should try to keep it simple as possible and slowly introduce "features."

3. Doakie

Posts: 2478; Member since: May 06, 2009

This is the bulls**t that all the Nexus lovers always gloss over. Nexus updates are buggy messes. They don't bother hammering out the flaws. So many people insist they want "timely updates" on all their phones when in reality Android and iPhones alike work best with the software they ship with. Both operating systems when updated to the newest version have bugs and battery issues. Sometimes bugs are fixed if you do a reset to stock and start over. People need to face it, new OS versions work best on new hardware. Old hardware should get security updates only. So many non-techy people I've talked to hate it when an OS update they didn't ask for changes the UI they've grown accustomed to.

4. VZWuser76

Posts: 4974; Member since: Mar 04, 2010

Agreed there are issues, but it's also not on every device out there. I know this because I have a 6p and have no trouble making calls or streaming my Google Play or Amazon music over my truck's audio system. Now it could be that they don't work with certain systems, I've read on the forums that some people have issues with systems from other car manufacturers, but I haven't had issues on either my old Dodge Charger or my current Silverado. And most any of the bugs these updates bring don't affect every single device, so that makes it hard to nail down the culprit. And btw, I've seen posts on forums about issues with Bluetooth for the 6p since it launched, so it's not just the upgrade, for some it was their right from the start. So it's not just upgrading that causes the problems.

7. Punchy506

Posts: 129; Member since: Jan 10, 2016

JEEZ! The 6p was launched 15 months ago and the original issues still haven't been fixed?! What are those monthly and extra x.x.x updates for anyway?

13. VZWuser76

Posts: 4974; Member since: Mar 04, 2010

Again, SOME people are having issues, not everyone. And from what I've seen of those threads on the forums, it's not widespread either.

19. scjeff

Posts: 2; Member since: Jan 13, 2017

It's on every device, it's just that the problem doesn't affect all users. The BT still works fine on one of my cars but the upgrade broke it on the other car.

5. Wiencon

Posts: 2278; Member since: Aug 06, 2014

Fortunately you can easily downgrade on Android which is not the case on iOS. I'm happy with 9.3.3 on my SE but 10 is tempting after I used it on 6s, but there is no way I'll upgrade to 11 because that will be the point when Apple decides to cripple my phone and it will get slower and slower until it runs like a piece of sh.t like my iPad Air on iOS9

6. cnour

Posts: 2305; Member since: Sep 11, 2014

When you see huge comments then the conclusion: unsolved Android problem and Android lovers are trying to minimize it.

8. joey_sfb

Posts: 6794; Member since: Mar 29, 2012

Talking about yourself? Just replace Android with iOS and read it again.

11. tedkord

Posts: 17456; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

Do you think he cries himself to sleep as he watches Android fly by iOS in nearly all areas?

14. VZWuser76

Posts: 4974; Member since: Mar 04, 2010

I assume that was pointed at me. Sorry for fully explaining my point of view. If only everyone could be as simple as you, we'd all be much less informed.

9. LanjaKodaka

Posts: 219; Member since: Sep 27, 2016

Nexus phones always issues no matter how many patches they provide...

10. LanjaKodaka

Posts: 219; Member since: Sep 27, 2016

Always have*

15. VZWuser76

Posts: 4974; Member since: Mar 04, 2010

So which phone is problem free? Please share an example.

12. yalokiy

Posts: 1089; Member since: Aug 01, 2016

Used my Nexus 5X with my car's bluetooth without any issues. Calls and music worked just fine.

16. nickywaldo

Posts: 2; Member since: Aug 24, 2015

I have the same problem with Pixel XL. But to be more specific. The problem only exists when connected to multiple BT devices. I.e. If my phone is connected to my watch, it will not connect to my car. If I disconnect my watch, I can connect to the car. I can then connect to the watch. But I am not sure if I have all functionality when following this process. By the way before bashing google. I also have the S7 Edge and Iphone 7 plus. I bought the Apple AirPods recently. The music "skips" (momentarily cuts out) all the time when connected to my iPhone. Works great on the S7 Edge and Pixel...... I also have a Muse accessory, the BT connection was rendered unreliable after IOS 10 was released. They are waiting for a apple to fix it in a future release. Nothing yet... Google on the other hand has a fundamental problem, they have to support manfacturers of phone that sell from $20 to $1000 (and above in some specialist cases), that is really difficult to do and avoid fragmentation. To make matters worse, the phone manufacturers all want to add unique features to differentiate themselves. Which adds even more complexity. Apple does not have these issues to deal with. However, my experience with the IPhone has become increasingly buggy over the past two or three years and sadly they have lost their mojo and I am becoming increasingly bored with their new releases. Seems like we have to choose between buggy innovation or boring, but safer (less so these days) incremental change...... is real phone innovation over? Just cosmetic/style and packaging now?

17. VZWuser76

Posts: 4974; Member since: Mar 04, 2010

Did a quick search and it seems it may have to do with a Bluetooth setting. Under your watch, there may be a setting that says something like " Play phone audio on watch". Some in the forums are saying if you uncheck that setting, it will connect to both your car and your watch simultaneously. I understand you might want to take calls on your watch (although it's pretty much the same as using your phone's speakerphone, but if you're not this should work.

18. scjeff

Posts: 2; Member since: Jan 13, 2017

This problem is worse that the headline indicates, it affects Pixel phones too. After the upgrade my 5X bluetooth stopped working on my Chevy but still works fine on a VW, my wifes Pixel has the exact same bluetooth issues. It is definitely a software problem and Google is still shipping new phones with this known major bug.

20. jdigriz

Posts: 1; Member since: Jan 13, 2017

I've had a 5x since April of 2016 and it will pair once with my Lexus GX470 and work fine until I turn the car off. When I start the car again the screen on the car says it's paired but the audio is routed through the phone not the car. Google sent me a replacement 5x that had the exact same problem. I got tired of trying to fix something that should just work especially since it's a ticket for not being a hands free driver so I purchased a Bluetooth device to put on my sun visor. The point I'm trying to make is Google gave me the impression when I called that I was in the minority with the Bluetooth problem for the 5x. I'm happy the people who paid iPhone prices for their Pixels aren't giving up.

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