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Audi Connect on new A3

Discussion in 'New A3/S3 (8V Chassis)' started by daveb99, Nov 16, 2012.

  1. daveb99
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    daveb99 Member

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    [Nov 16, 2012]
    What's the score with Audi Connect on the new A3?

    It seems to be mentioned on the website, but not in the brochure.

    If I specify the Technology Pack, is it included? How does it work, I assume there's a subscription to pay? Or does it connect via a smartphone (and if so does it work with an iPhone 4)?
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  3. Vertigo1
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    Vertigo1 Well-Known Member

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    [Nov 16, 2012]
    It's not available yet :(

    I spent ages trying to get any info on this and no-one knew why it wasn't in the brochure. The reason, it turns out, is that it's not available yet but should be added as an option sometime next year.

    It's bit a damn cheeky the amount of publicity I've seen over this. They demonstrated it at one of the big motor shows and I've seen a lot of press releases mentioning Audi Connect in combination with the new A3, yet at launch it's not available?

    When it's available, it will basically allow you to access the Internet on the move for things like Google Maps and points of interest on the satnav and creating a Wifi hotspot in the car for others to use. There are two ways it can do this. Firstly it can make use of your phone's data connection via bluetooth, but this requires the remote sim access profile (RSAP) to be enabled on the phone. Unfortunately Apple don't and never will support this so no iPhones will work with the system. The alternative is to put a SIM card into the car directly (it'll be in the glovebox where the DVD drive and SD card slots are). With this system you'd obviously need some kind of contract or subscription on the card for 3G connectivity. Unfortunately, if you do this then it will also use the SIM card for phone calls etc and thus won't connect to your phone via bluetooth for these any more.

    Basically, when it's available, if you want to use it then you won't be able to with an iPhone I'm afraid.
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  4. Jeff777LUFC
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    Jeff777LUFC Member

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    [Jan 5, 2013]
    Apologies for bringing back this older thread, but I was reading the iOS6 Manual about creating a 'personal hotspot' with the iPhone. It looks to me like you can do exactly this and use the phones' sim to connect to the Audi via Bluetooth or USB. I guess USB would be best but not sure if that only comes with the 'Audi phone box' option or if everyone has it?

    Not sure if I've missed something but it looked pretty straightforward.
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  5. Vertigo1
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    Vertigo1 Well-Known Member

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    [Jan 5, 2013]
    Sorry but no, it won't work. The car doesn't connect to the phone via its Wifi Hotspot, it needs the Bluetooth Remote SIM Access Profile (RSAP) in order to work, which basically allows an accessory (the car in this case) to connect directly to the SIM card within the phone. The car basically has a phone built into it and accesses the SIM card as if you'd actually taken it out of your phone and put it into the car (which is also an option incidentally). This means that the phone can be put into a very low power state, just keeping the SIM card and bluetooth connection powered, saving the battery. The car then acts as the phone itself, providing Internet access and Wifi connectivity etc.

    As the iPhone doesn't (and probably never will) support the RSAP protocol, it simply won't work. I'm not sure of the reasons but have read that it's actually a Nokia invention, so whether there are licensing issues or some such. Android handsets can be made to support RSAP via additional software but not iPhones. Someone did make a piece of software which supported it on the iPhone but only up to the 4 (not the 4S or 5) and required jailbreaking.
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  6. Jeff777LUFC
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    Jeff777LUFC Member

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    [Jan 5, 2013]
    Thanks Vertigo, you've obviously checked into this in some detail.

    So the iPhone won't do RSAP, and The Audi won't connect without it. It seems a shame, as the car can use all of the other phone info - names, numbers and hands free calls etc. but can't access the 3G.

    Certainly not really practical to remove the sim from the phone for car use except on special occasions, and i wouldn't really want to get a separate sim/data plan (and then you say you can't use the phone for hands free calls).

    I'm disgusted really :)
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  7. NHN
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    NHN Retrofitter - Audi - VW - Skoda - Seat Site Sponsor VCDS Map User

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    [Jan 6, 2013]
    Well the A5 version works via both, rsap or a sim plummed into the console, so if audi choose to not follow suit as all the other mmi based chassis's, I'd be extremely surprised tbh, but I wasnt hugely impressed by google maps tbh, ideally needs 4g to make it ideally suitable.
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  8. Vertigo1
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    Vertigo1 Well-Known Member

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    [Jan 6, 2013]
    Yeah the system will allow you to just plug a SIM card directly into the car itself.

    I don't blame Audi for the iPhone incompatibility, this is solely Apple's fault for being so bloody minded about RSAP. What I do blame Audi for is not thinking it through properly. What would be a good compromise is if you could use a dedicated SIM card in the car for Internet connectivity, so you could use Google Maps and search and provide Wifi hotspot connectivity in the car, but still connect to your own phone via bluetooth for calls and so on. There is no reason why this wouldn't be possible, yet Audi won't permit it. If you use a dedicated SIM card, then that's what's used for all calls as well, and you can't connect another phone via bluetooth. Hopeless.

    Frankly I think the Google Maps stuff on the nav is a bit of a gimmick anyway. It'll look good in demonstrations but, when actually using the nav, it'll just make it harder to see where you're going. This is the same reason I keep mine in 2D top-down view, not 3D, as the latter just makes it harder to see where you're going.
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  9. NHN
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    NHN Retrofitter - Audi - VW - Skoda - Seat Site Sponsor VCDS Map User

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    [Jan 6, 2013]
    You can do that with the A5/A4 3g+ system, use sim for data etc & BT with phone, so maybe its a setting thing, may have to look in engineering mode or options under telephone for this, may require an fw update if its not available or audi are just being bloody minded again & not allowing the feature on that chassis, wouldnt surprise me.

    Apple, well what can one say, they're just arrogant for some things that ould clearly help the end users.
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  10. Vertigo1
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    Vertigo1 Well-Known Member

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    [Jan 6, 2013]
    Very interesting - maybe it does support it and wherever I read/heard that is incorrect? When it finally arrives on the 8V we'll have to see. Only got my current one for a couple of years and will most likely end up with another after that so should be available by then :)

    As for Apple - love their products, hate the company.
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  11. Gazzz
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    Gazzz Member

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    [Jan 6, 2013]
    I'm not sure what the deal is now, but when I was looking into it about 6 months back on the larger Audi's (A4/A5/A6), you couldn't do data on the on-board sim and also Bluetooth to the phone for calls. Interestingly, it is possible on US models, but not European ones, and a lot of people were getting the typical shoulder-shrugging response from Audi. Annoyingly I can't locate the (very long) thread on it right now to see how it worked out. It's possible Audi did eventually fix it as NHN says it's now possible, or that somebody worked out how to code it in VCDS. Hopefully Audi have taken note of the complaints when choosing whether to make this possible for Europe in the new A3!
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  12. Vertigo1
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    Vertigo1 Well-Known Member

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    [Jan 6, 2013]
    If possible, it'd actually be my ideal solution, as I'd prefer to have a dedicated SIM with its own contract in the car for data only, rather than having any usage eating into my mobile contract.
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  13. NHN
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    NHN Retrofitter - Audi - VW - Skoda - Seat Site Sponsor VCDS Map User

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    [Jan 6, 2013]
    Thats exactly what a friend does in his A5, with some tweaking of setup on the 3g+ he has fitted, it works like a charm, but yes the google maps are not that good imho.
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  14. Gazzz
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    Gazzz Member

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    [Jan 6, 2013]
    @Vertigo1 yes, that's how I'd want to use the system too. Mobile broadband sim in the car (maybe PAYG so it can't run up bills without me realising), then Bluetooth to my phone for calls

    @NHN that's good to hear! Sounds like it might be resolved then!

    I also found the thread I was reading before. It was actually about the A7 (although it seems the new A6 has a very similar system). It's quite long, but can be found here: MMI Navigation Plus / Online Services / Mobile Phones
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