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Discussion Starter #1
I know the Bolt does not come with GPS. You have to use your smartphone and Android auto or Apple carplay.

I was wondering what people's experiences with doing this have been. Specifically :

Once initial setup is done via the USB connector, is it possible to use Android audio or Apple carplay over wireless (wifi) without having to plug in the phone each time ? This causes wear on the USB connector and is an ongoing concern.
Especially if the phone's USB connector is weak to begin with. My husband already charges his phone through wireless due to this issue. It would probably be OK for a short one-time setup, but no more than that. We already tried to have the phone repaired, unsuccessfully - even after the connector was replaced, there was some short that repair shop couldn't figure out.
 

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I don't have a Bolt yet, but I tried this out when I test drove one. Apple Car Play only works via USB on the Bolt. You can certainly use navigation on the iPhone and have the audio stream via bluetooth to your vehicle speakers, but if you want to see the map on the car's screen it will need to be connected via USB. I believe only BMW has wireless apple car play right now.

No idea about android auto.
 

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Android Auto also only works through a physical USB connection. It works well when it is attached, but you must have a phone/USB cord that are properly fitted. Even a small amount of jostling will break the connection, which is a pain to try to get back up and running while you are driving.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Android Auto also only works through a physical USB connection. It works well when it is attached, but you must have a phone/USB cord that are properly fitted. Even a small amount of jostling will break the connection, which is a pain to try to get back up and running while you are driving.
Thanks. That's really too bad. It means having to buy a new phone to use it. And ongoing wear and tear on connector.
And I don't suppose the USB connection is Quickcharge compatible ? So one would have to choose between using GPS and fast charge.

With regular (slow= charge, one could potentially use more energy from the phone battery for GPS than the car's USB connection provides to charge it back - ie. run out of battery on a long trip with GPS.

Seems like this has not been well thought out.
 

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All newer GM vehicles, including my 2009 Chevy Equinox, have electronic compasses. So one can navigate with that. I don't have GPS nor never needed it to navigate. Maybe being a "Boy Scout" years ago does help me know how to use a compass and read maps. I have never got "lost"!
 

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All newer GM vehicles, including my 2009 Chevy Equinox, have electronic compasses. So one can navigate with that. I don't have GPS nor never needed it to navigate. Maybe being a "Boy Scout" years ago does help me know how to use a compass and read maps. I have never got "lost"!
Raymond, I cannot for the life of me, understand why you posted this. It seems abundantly clear the OP is looking for navigation, not simply a GPS, which is included on every Android or iPhone anyway. In addition, dismissing the OP's concern because you've never been lost (on an island), has no bearing on people who live in the heavily metropolitan California (where Navigation is essential to those traveling), and doesn't seem to be a boy scout trait.

OP, I understand and share your concerns, which have already been shared by some other new and prospective owners. Hopefully, GM will take these into account and either provide an OTA update to fix, or at a minimum, fix this with the MY 18 Bolt.

Joe
 

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All newer GM vehicles, including my 2009 Chevy Equinox, have electronic compasses. So one can navigate with that. I don't have GPS nor never needed it to navigate. Maybe being a "Boy Scout" years ago does help me know how to use a compass and read maps. I have never got "lost"!
Drive around Boston Massachusetts someday and you'll become a firm believer in GPS. None of the streets follow any sort of grid pattern thus you get very disoriented so GPS is a must when you go anywhere new. Not the cas in the large city closest to me where everything is a square block so when you miss a turn, you can easily double back with a series of left or right turns.
 

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Raymond, I cannot for the life of me, understand why you posted this. It seems abundantly clear the OP is looking for navigation, not simply a GPS, which is included on every Android or iPhone anyway. In addition, dismissing the OP's concern because you've never been lost (on an island), has no bearing on people who live in the heavily metropolitan California (where Navigation is essential to those traveling), and doesn't seem to be a boy scout trait.

OP, I understand and share your concerns, which have already been shared by some other new and prospective owners. Hopefully, GM will take these into account and either provide an OTA update to fix, or at a minimum, fix this with the MY 18 Bolt.

Joe
Raymond is just rubbing it in about the paradise of living in Puerto Rico. I know a retired guy who also moved there and migrates from Michigan to IL to Puerto Rico depending on the weather. I remember the days before smartphones. When I lived in Chicagoland, I had an inch and a half thick book in the back seat that showed every detailed street over 4 counties. We certainly have come a long way. As a volt owner even with built in nav (came with the car, I wouldn't have ordered it this way) I still prefer to use Apple Maps displayed on the smartphone and audio piped via Bluetooth over thrnGM supplied maps. But if CarPlay was an option to display maps on the dash, I'd probably be fine with the USB cable. I like to top off the phone battery on my car rides anyway.
 

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All newer GM vehicles, including my 2009 Chevy Equinox, have electronic compasses. So one can navigate with that. I don't have GPS nor never needed it to navigate. Maybe being a "Boy Scout" years ago does help me know how to use a compass and read maps. I have never got "lost"!
I used to think that way. But now that my wife/navigator has passed away I find that it's too much stress to be trying to find yourself on a paper map and read the street names at the same time as trying to look for street signs through the windshield AND all the while trying to drive safely. A friend lent me his GPS while I was driving in his unfamiliar city and I was an instant convert. Turn-by-turn voice directions let me drive in places I've never been before as if I know them like the back of my hand. I'll never go back to paper navigation again (although I still use it for trip planning).
 

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I have an iPhone 6s and a Bolt and the setup, for me, works really well. As I'm walking out the to the car, I setup the address in Apple Maps and when I get in the car, I plug it in. Immediately, the map appears on my Bolt screen and off I go. The USB connector also charges the phone. The only thing I've ever had to do with a phone USB connector is blow out the lint and things that get into it from your pocket. Not sure I would tolerate a phone with a broken or unstable USB connector.

Would I prefer it to be wireless? The advantages would be - (1) no charge cable coming out of the center console, (2) not having to plug in anything at the beginning of the trip. Disadvantages - (a) uses precious phone battery life, (b) unreliability - Bluetooth and wireless communications (even today) are sometimes flaky and don't always work right. I want my navigation system to be the least distracting thing while I'm driving. (c) my phone battery doesn't get charged. (d) I might not be able to play music from my phone at the same time. (e) Map screen refreshes of the map might be slower due to communication speeds.

I think I'll stick with plugging it in and having it work each and every time.
 

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Thanks. That's really too bad. It means having to buy a new phone to use it. And ongoing wear and tear on connector.
And I don't suppose the USB connection is Quickcharge compatible ? So one would have to choose between using GPS and fast charge.

With regular (slow= charge, one could potentially use more energy from the phone battery for GPS than the car's USB connection provides to charge it back - ie. run out of battery on a long trip with GPS.

Seems like this has not been well thought out.
I've never had issues with my connector and I plug in my iPhone almost daily to my volt. The phone will keep charging even if you use gps, it won't run out of battery while plugged in. There's also the wifi charging as an option btw, works on some androids.
 

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Yes. Even while using Nav on the Bolt's slow USB charging, you'll see a net gain in the phone's battery charge. It doesn't go up quickly, but it does go up.
 

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Need GPS here in SoCal, one accident can quadruple your commuting time...

There's also the wifi charging as an option btw, works on some androids.
Wireless charging is standard on the Premier trim and not available on the LT...It's incredible cheap and easy to install a QI charger to any car, though...

Apple really did acquire a company who specializing in transmitting electricity though wifi, latest iPhone 8 rumors are stating unfortunately if the iPhone 8 does get wireless charging, it may only be a QI type and not "wifi charging"...
 

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I have an iPhone 6s and a Bolt and the setup, for me, works really well. As I'm walking out the to the car, I setup the address in Apple Maps and when I get in the car, I plug it in. Immediately, the map appears on my Bolt screen and off I go. The USB connector also charges the phone. The only thing I've ever had to do with a phone USB connector is blow out the lint and things that get into it from your pocket. Not sure I would tolerate a phone with a broken or unstable USB connector.

Would I prefer it to be wireless? The advantages would be - (1) no charge cable coming out of the center console, (2) not having to plug in anything at the beginning of the trip. Disadvantages - (a) uses precious phone battery life, (b) unreliability - Bluetooth and wireless communications (even today) are sometimes flaky and don't always work right. I want my navigation system to be the least distracting thing while I'm driving. (c) my phone battery doesn't get charged. (d) I might not be able to play music from my phone at the same time. (e) Map screen refreshes of the map might be slower due to communication speeds.

I think I'll stick with plugging it in and having it work each and every time.
Over time that lint will become impacted crud at the end of the lightning connector, and when it builds up enough to cause the connector to not go all the way in, it will cause the connection to not be reliable. I'm sure many iPhone users ended up upgrading phones rather than carefully taking a toothpick to the connector and picking out the crud. This reminds me of the days when you had to take a fingernail to the mouse ball wheels in the days of non-optical mice.
 

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I do not miss a built in nav at all. My biggest issue of built-in nav is that it's never as updated as a phone's maps, plus we have to pay to get periodic updates for the car's maps. Since I'm generally listening to podcasts or music, the phone's navigation better integrates with CarPlay apps. The main advantage of it is offline usage (being in the mountains with no cellular data), but that's not a place I expect to take a Bolt.

My standard procedure when getting in the Bolt is:
1) Plug iPhone into USB Lightning cable
2) Put phone on the dash mount (I use a magnetic mount, super easy to take on and off)
3) Start car and go

I prefer to use Google Maps (for the traffic-based routing), which requires me to interact with the phone. But if I'm already driving, I'll just use voice command and Apple Maps which is still better than a built-in nav.

Regarding the charging rate, the car's USB provides enough power that the phone will still charge up when GPS is active. For maximum charging, I leave a 12V (cigarette lighter) adapater with in the car, which can put out 4A over USB.

I find that the Volt's CarPlay is not completely robust. About 10% of the times I plug in the phone, the car will not see the phone. Sometimes rebooting the phone will fix it. Using OEM Lightning cable does not fix it. Interestingly, the phone will always charge when plugged in, whether the car recognizes it or not. With the Bolt, it has so far been very reliable with the CarPlay connection.
 

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The main advantage of it is offline usage (being in the mountains with no cellular data), but that's not a place I expect to take a Bolt.
First, this made me laugh. That was the first place I took my Bolt EV! :D

I find that the Volt's CarPlay is not completely robust. About 10% of the times I plug in the phone, the car will not see the phone. Sometimes rebooting the phone will fix it. Using OEM Lightning cable does not fix it. Interestingly, the phone will always charge when plugged in, whether the car recognizes it or not. With the Bolt, it has so far been very reliable with the CarPlay connection.
Second, I am running into similar issues with the Bolt EV and Android Auto. Because my work requires my phone to password lock/protect, I have to actually enter a password and unlock my phone to activate Android Auto on occasion. If I'm driving, that means I actually need to pull over. And if the data connection is lost in anyway, it sometimes takes several tries to reconnect the phone to the display with Android Auto.
 

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To get around the problem of continually connecting/disconnecting a cell phone with Android Auto (AA) installed, why not buy a used phone that would be left plugged into the car and dedicated to playing AA? A little research would point you to desirable cell phones such as a Nexus. The phone would have to be added to your current cell phone account and probably be issued a new number.

You might want to switch carriers. Google's Project Fi or TING are two that I know that have minimal fees for phones. Their plans are reasonable in cost.
 

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I think the first thing I will try is to get a better fitting data cord for my phone. Part of the problem as I see it is that the cord I am using (though compatible) isn't a good fit.
 
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