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So, after hearing all the negativity, I finally gave it a slight workout this past week. While it's definitely no iOS/Android device, it wasn't that bad.

Observations:

iPhone music streaming works, but isn't always intuitive as to how it works. I connected to my gf's iPhone 5 and started playing music. We then wanted to play music via Spotify instead but while it showed the song and album art once opening the Spotify app, it didn't play the audio stream. I then unplugged it, had her start Spotify, then connected it again. Voila -- Spotify working perfectly and could be controlled from the iPhone or IRIS. I didn't try all the different possibilities some I'm not sure if there is some order or issues with switching sources in the iPhone itself which doesn't totally jive with IRIS without reconnecting.

I was actually shocked that it worked and really didn't expect it to, but had the urge to try after someone reported that the Sirius App worked.

Accessing music on her iPhone worked as well with no hiccups.

I don't have a micro-USB cable for my Galaxy Nexus right now, but I'll get one tomorrow and see how that works. I don't expect it to be as seamless and well integrated as iOS, but who knows.

My experience with the iPhone made me look at this whole IRIS/smartphone integration thing from a different angle. The fact that I got album art and functionality from the iPhone itself, Spotify, and Sirius makes me wonder what we can really expect from this system, or any system really, as far as non-iOS integration. I have a feeling that there is probably some rigid API for iOS that everyone uses and that makes all these things interact consistently. I'm less hopeful when it comes to Android. There are so many different versions and devices that I have my doubts as to just how good it will/could be.

I also wonder if stuff will just stop working. It's probably tedious enough to keep integration working well when iOS/Android are changing, let alone individual apps changing their programming and functionality all the time. I mean, there are no shortage of comments/reviews that say "this app doesn't work on my HTC whetever," or "crashes on my iPhone 4S." Should we all just find a working device, download all the working apps we can, turn off automatic updates, and just leave it in the car till we sell it?

I think the best we can hope for is that there are standards for certain features that everyone follows and that will work universally for a while. Whether there is or not, I don't know. I'll have to ask my mobile developer friends about that.

Anyways...

Navigation worked fine for a while, but at one point the location was incorrect and not updating the distance to the turn, causing me to miss it. Obviously that shouldn't happen, but it wasn't the end of the world and could live with it. Eventually it recalculated the route or maybe I just restarted the route; i forget. Nowhere near as good as Google Maps or dedicated GPS units, but it worked good enough.

The touch sensors sensitivity would definitely be improved, but it wasn't terrible. It sometime required a harder press than expected.

Touch accuracy could be improved as well. Not sure if it's the case, but I found accuracy worse in some areas than others. The EWRSAD area of the keyboard gave me some accuracy issues, though it's not like I am 100% using a phone either, so hard to say if it was just me or the device. I'm leaning more towards the device though.

Overall I'm OK with it. I really only listen to music, and only occasionally use navigation, both of which it did OK with for the most part. Could it be better? Yes. Is it still better than every other system I've used in cars? Yes. I don't change cars enough to have experience with all the latest and greatest every year, so as far as I'm concerned it's better than anything I've ever used in-dash.

That said, I have very high expectations and huge amounts of hate for OEM systems, IRIS included, given the sheer power and ease of use of pretty much every phone in the last few years. It seems ridiculous to pay thousands of dollars for something less useful than a $99 phone.

I'll have to see what changes are made to the new version. I'd love to see Android implementation, but I wonder what that would mean for iOS, and vice versa. I've never really thought about that till now, but I'm thinking that expecting solid integration across both types of devices might just not be in the cards. No idea how licensing works or how easy/possible it is to get good integration for both Android/iOS. If it comes down to solid functionality for one, and limited for the other, I'm inclined to believe that McLaren will go for more feature-full iOS integration while viewing Android devices more like flash drives with music.

Guess we'll have to wait and see. I'll test my Nexus integration tomorrow.



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The more that I use mine the better it becomes...
On the run over to the Ring last week, I had my Iphone playing music for the entire trip, however after about 4 hours the tracks started to stutter and the mapping froze.
A simple reboot and it was fine for the rest of the trip.
It's a nice display as you mention with the artwork displayed etc, however at night the display lights up the cabin and you're unable to to turn the display off in any way. It creates a hard contrast against night time driving.- although a simple resolve is to lay your Iphone over the screen blocking it ;)
One thing I have found is the map routing is terrible!! it makes hardly any difference between fastest and shortest, I select shortest to entice it to pick a cross country route, it still however thought the motorway was the shortest and considering the distance the motorway was not the shortest by any stretch.
The POI are terrible, not all Petrol stations are on the system- which makes it pointless in my eyes and the destination hotel was wrong. I had time to test it and whilst sat in a major petrol station I asked it for the nearest.. about 3 miles away apparently!:eek:
If it was a free bit of kit then I'd see it as an acceptable get out of jail card- but it wasn't free!

I still can't sync my phone onto the system although it syncs with all my other vehicles.

For all its issues though, the fact I can put the USB in or play music via my phone etc does mean that I do use it.
 

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I just cant understand why, for $99 dollars you can buy a GREAT Garmin, and car manufacturers cant seem to just duplicate this in their cars. Even the system in my GL450 is garbage.
 

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I do wonder if it's a pride thing. "We're a massive global company, how would it look if we resorted to some non-automotive outfit for a key bit of our kit that affects (these days) a big part of user experience. We must control stuff!". The world of course responds - "It would look bloody brilliant, you guys are rubbish at this and they're experts - just provide the physical connections and let someone who knows what they're doing do the rest."
Would be a great world where the options for Infotainment are just which operating system you prefer and then they leave you to your choice of apps. Can't be that far away now...
 

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At first, i thought the Iris interface was neat (design wise) and although the touch sensitivity could be improved (I sometimes have to apply some pressure to the screen to get it to select) I thought it wasnt it didnt seem so bad. But contrary to Gary's experience, whereby it got better for him with time, mine is starting to get worse (or I'm just over the honeymoon period and am starting to notice issues more).

My iphone connects everytime, but recently I have been having issues playing the music whilst connected. it shows that the track is playing on the phone but nothing on Iris. Unplugging and reconnecting doesnt appear to solve the issue, except when i turn the car off and on again if I get lucky. No need to talk further about the other established issues (poor bluetooth phone quality, sat nav and sluggishness). For a car that has no CD drive and relies on iphone/USB to play music, it is annoying having to stick with radio only on a journey.
 

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Dxb do you have a large music connection? Did you get an update to 10.6 when you noticed the USB disconnection start to occur?

That's what happened to me. I found 2 things that help. One, sometimes just unplugging and rep lugging helps; however, if you have a large collection (I have over 25000 tracks) it will seem like nothing is happening, but if you wait a few minutes, the drive will reappear. Other times you may notice that the iPod looks like its still connected even when you unplug it; and the iPod is frozen or just messed up. The solution then is to unplug the iPod, reboot it, the replug, then wait a few minutes, and it should show up again.

This didn't happen when I was on 10.2, started after the 10.6 update. I haven't tried it with the 12.0 update that I just had installed, so wondering if they squashed that bug...
 

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I actually really like my current IRIS system and use the iPhone music every day, phone and GPS occasionally. It would be hard to turn down an Android-based system, though. Looking forward to seeing it.
 

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If they just gave us sat radio I'd be happy. JK, I too noticed when you have 20+ Gb of music it freezes much more. I use my old iPhones as iPods in my cars. I just leave them in the car permanently and sync them via wifi. The Mac is not the only car that is sluggish with large collections. The AM will play any device new or old flawlessly, but you better have play lists because searching music takes longer than launching the spac shuttle. The Bentley does not like older devises iOS 4 or earlier and toggles between working fine and not recognizing the device. Given that all factory systems have issues I'd say the Mac has the most potential - I hope the 2014 HW begins to exploit it. And for goodness sakes, give us a reboot button, sleep function for the screen while normal driving or playing music (don't need the screen on) & dimmer control - darn thing is blinding at night. The menu system is fine, similar to Bentley in the fact that you can start the address location at any point, nice in my opinion.
 

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Sync you phone and have someone call you. Sound quality is horrendous!!!

I agree with regards to Spotify and Pandora. That is what I do, just play music though my phone.
 

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What is the sound quality of Spotify when using the service via a phone?

I have a small portable HDD for the car and haven't had any issues but I'm contemplating switching to a streaming music service.
 

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What is the sound quality of Spotify when using the service via a phone?

I have a small portable HDD for the car and haven't had any issues but I'm contemplating switching to a streaming music service.
It is ok, depends on the station. Certainly not as clear as a memory stick, and a 320k quality or better recording.
 

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Took mine in for a couple of warrantee jobs today. Iris got me there no problem and the iPod, through the USB, worked a treat. The only thing that's bad IMHO is the FM radio, appears to work when it wants to...
 

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I am really happy to see a thread on Iris....I have been having some struggles with it myself (though I am relatively new to MP4).

On the subject of BT, when on the phone I hear people great but no one at the other end can understand me (horrible sound). I tried Jawbone and it just was not that great, I tried a set of phone ear and mic and that works great (as expected), but I just did not want to be tangled with the wires. So I decided to get creative. I thought perhaps the mic was not that good. I got a splitter for my phone. I connected one end to the Aux input and one to a mic. Then I tried it by making a call. I could hear people through the speakers and people could hear me from the "external" mic (and no wires, at least around my head!). The problem was that the sound was still not good enough for people. So I decided the problem was either the splitter or the mic (or perhaps closed loop feedback from the system)....I am waiting for a better quality splitter and I will test it and if people are interested I will be happy to report back.

BTW if you decide to use the phone ears and mic (which I will if my experiments don't work and if I don't blow up Iris in the process), and if you like streaming radio or listening to music from your phone (which I do with pandora, spotify etc.) then getting the splitter is a great idea. It works great , you can be listening to streaming radio and if you get a call and you answer it automatically switches to phone (vs streaming radio). BTW all of this is on my Android phone.

All this work around stuff can be fun, especially for the engineer/SW developer in me .....but reality is that Iris needs to improve IMO, especially given the quality of the rest of the car and the cost of the system. I have been thinking about suggesting to the community/forum that we compile a list of improvements for IRIS and then we submit it to McLaren. I think this can go a long way to get this stuff fixed. This is why I was happy to see this tread.

Items like: BT needs to work, NAV needs to know where you are, FM reception needs to improve dramatically etc. will of course be on top of the list. But we can come up with a list of items that they can improve on rather than having the engineers and the SW developers shoot in the dark or guess at them. Here are a few examples for the communities's consideration (and I have many more but these are just examples):


Suggested Improvements for Iris (Overall):
* Voice Activation
* Have the system go off uniformly/consistently (mine goes off sometimes when I turn off the engine, sometimes when I open the door to exit, sometimes when I lock the doors and sometimes 10 to 15 min after closing the doors and walking away!)

Suggested Improvements for Radio:
* Add at least an additional 9 Favorite Stations

Suggested Improvements for the phone:
* Add at least 9 Favorite People/Numbers (quick dial)
* Add basic functions such as redial

Suggested Improvements for Media:
* Recognizing folders on memory devices (this helps in organizing your music and in effect creating playlists)
* Hold down "next/Previous" button to forward/back the track at a faster speed (good for skipping parts of songs you don't like or to back track and listen to a part that you missed)
* When you hit the "previous" button when listening to a song/track from files (memory stick etc and not ipod) it goes all the way back to the previous track instead of the beginning of the Track. This happens regardless of how far into the track you are, whether in the middle or even at the very end of the track. This includes when you are within the first few seconds of the song which is fine as this is a typical feature on other "mature" systems, realizing you more than likely want to re-hear the previous track.

what do you guys think? should we try to help these guys in coming up with a better system?

Sorry for the super long reply
 

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Tested Android today. Results were so so.

My friends Galaxy S4 worked... kinda. It only seemed to show a few of the songs, those of which were full albums and which I think were .mp4 files. I have a feeling that it was a file type issue. I also wasn't able to change songs from the phone like I was on the iPhone 5.

I then tried my Galaxy Nexus (stock Android 4.3) and was able to play any song and select the song to play directly from my phone if I wanted.

This was hardly a thorough test, but I think my suspicions are correct in that all phones are different and it's hard to say what will or will not work when it comes to Android.

I'd say that the safe thing to do would just use an iOS device with the car for best results. Just leave it in the car and you should be fine. Not sure how that jives with people's cell phone/data plans, but I'll probably just go buy an iPhone 5 or 5C when it comes out in September.



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Macster, I like your suggestions. We have a running list of suggested improvements here, btw:

http://www.mclarenlife.com/forums/mclaren-mp4-12c/2536-improvements-2.html#post46999

FastZilla, I leave my iPod in the car as well. What's annoying is that I still have to select the darn iPod in after I hit the media button on the IRIS home screen, and that it seems to need to scan the drive every time. It would be great for it not to need to rescan the drive every time when I don't unplug it.

Macster, wrt bluetooth, what version of the software are you using? My car's bluetooth worked well when I was on 10.2 of the software. I heard people well. People heard me well. And SIRI understood me well. After the car was updated to 10.6, people stopped hearing me well, and SIRI cant understand me.

I just got 12.0 installed, but haven't tried bluetooth yet to see if it improved...
 

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Dxb do you have a large music connection? Did you get an update to 10.6 when you noticed the USB disconnection start to occur?

That's what happened to me. I found 2 things that help. One, sometimes just unplugging and rep lugging helps; however, if you have a large collection (I have over 25000 tracks) it will seem like nothing is happening, but if you wait a few minutes, the drive will reappear. Other times you may notice that the iPod looks like its still connected even when you unplug it; and the iPod is frozen or just messed up. The solution then is to unplug the iPod, reboot it, the replug, then wait a few minutes, and it should show up again.

This didn't happen when I was on 10.2, started after the 10.6 update. I haven't tried it with the 12.0 update that I just had installed, so wondering if they squashed that bug...
Hi John,

When I bought my car it already had the 10.6 upgrade so couldnt get a chance to try it out beforehand. I tried unplugging and replugging a few times and I think it probably only worked once for me. Iris recognises that my iphone is plugged in and brings up my playlists etc., but just doesnt play the music. If i click the play button on the iphone itself (which I always do as I find browsinf through the iphone interface easier), it shows me that its playing (on the iphone) but no sound from Iris and the screen doesnt change to the "currently playing" screen but remains where it was (playlist selection menu or wherever you riginally were on iris).

Weird, but i guess ill wait for a proven upgrade to come out then ill take my car in (service centre is a fair bit out of town) unless my next service becomes due before then or my my de-fogger vent windscreen fogging becomes unbearable.

Let me know your thought on vs. version 12.
 

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... And for goodness sakes, give us a reboot button, sleep function for the screen while normal driving or playing music (don't need the screen on) & dimmer control - darn thing is blinding at night.
If you keep the home button pressed for long enough then it reboots the system.

If you find it too bright at night, try pressing the little ^ that's displayed between "source" and "browse". This pushes the album artwork into the background and turns down the brightness significantly.
 

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Thanks JK. Glad to see there is a list that is being complied. Would be great to somehow get it to McLaren when ready.

My SW version is 12 as well. Had it installed the first week I had it...so that is all I am familiar with.
 

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Weird, but i guess ill wait for a proven upgrade to come out then ill take my car in (service centre is a fair bit out of town) unless my next service becomes due before then or my my de-fogger vent windscreen fogging becomes unbearable.
No need to drive out there, they'll collect and redeliver your car with a covered flatbed. In my experience, the delivery drivers are very good.

I've said it in other threads ... I highly recommend getting that vent blocked off. I'm surprised you haven't already found it unbearable with the current humidity :)
 
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