5 Simple Methods to Play Apple Music in a Car

By Adam Gorden Updated on September 21, 2023

Listening to Apple Music in a car has been a very pleasant experience for most people. Many car owners prefer to listen to Apple Music when they are driving outside. With the crystal-clear music, it can make yourself refreshed and reduce any annoyance and dullness during your trip or the commute between work and home. However, some car owners or music enthusiasts may not be so familiar with the car stereo and Apple Music. To help people to get better use of Apple Music on the car stereo, we'll uncover some instructions about using Apple Music in car.

play apple music in a car

Part 1. How to Play Apple Music in a Car

We've collected and added the most popular 5 methods for car drivers to listen to Apple Music in your vehicle. Please take these suggestions.

Method 1: Use Apple CarPlay/Android Auto

Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are innovative software platforms designed to enhance the in-car entertainment and navigation experience. They essentially allow you to mirror your smartphone's interface on your car's infotainment screen and access applications like Apple Music in your car.

On Apple CarPlay:

Developed by Apple, CarPlay is designed for iOS users. It seamlessly integrates your iPhone with your car's infotainment system, allowing you to access your favorite apps, make calls, send messages, and use navigation, all while keeping your focus on the road.

On Android:

Android Auto is Google's counterpart for Android users. It offers similar functionality as CarPlay but caters to Android smartphones. With Android Auto, you can access apps like Google Maps, Amazon Music, and more, all through your car's touchscreen display.

Setting Up Apple CarPlay/Android Auto with Your Car:

apple music on apple carplay interface

  1. Ensure your car's infotainment system supports Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. Most modern vehicles do, but it's always good to confirm.
  2. Use a compatible USB cable to connect your iPhone to the car's USB port designated for CarPlay or Android Auto.
  3. If it's your first time connecting, your phone will prompt you to enable the software. Follow the on-screen instructions to proceed.
  4. Your car's infotainment screen will now display the software interface, mirroring your phone's apps and functions. You can navigate through the interface using touchscreen controls, voice commands, or physical buttons, depending on your car's setup.
  5. Tap on the software icons to access various apps like Apple Maps, Apple Music, Messages, and more. You can use voice assistances for voice commands, such as asking for directions or sending texts.

Playing Apple Music on Apple CarPlay/Android Auto:

apple music on android auto interface

  1. You can now use the touchscreen to navigate your music library, playlists, and albums, just like you would on your smartphone.
  2. When you've found the song you want, tap on it. The music will start playing through your car's speakers.
  3. Use the touchscreen or the physical buttons on your car's dashboard or steering wheel to control the volume, pause, play, or skip to the next track.
  4. If you prefer hands-free control, simply say "Hey Google" (Android) or "Hey Siri" (iPhone) and then something like "Play 'Song Name' " or "Skip this song."
  5. When you're finished, exit the Apple Music app, unplug your smartphone from the USB cable, and turn off your car.

Method 2: Use Bluetooth Connection

Connecting your smartphone to your car's audio system via Bluetooth is a convenient and wireless way to enjoy music, make hands-free calls, and seamlessly integrate your device with your vehicle.

Pairing Your Phone to Your Car via Bluetooth:

On iPhone:

  1. Open your iPhone's "Settings" and select "Bluetooth."
  2. Toggle the Bluetooth switch off for about 5 seconds, and then turn it back on.
  3. In your car, ensure Bluetooth is enabled on your car's audio system.
  4. Look for your iPhone in the list of available devices and select it to initiate pairing.
  5. Follow any on-screen prompts to complete the pairing process.

On Android:

  1. Swipe down from the top of your Android phone's screen to access the quick settings panel.
  2. Ensure Bluetooth is turned on. You may need to tap the Bluetooth icon to enable it.
  3. In the quick settings panel, tap and hold the Bluetooth icon to access a list of available devices.
  4. Look for your car's name (e.g., "[Your car's name]") in the list.
  5. Tap your car's name in the list to begin pairing both devices via Bluetooth.
  6. Follow any on-screen prompts or input any necessary PIN or passkey provided by your car's system to complete the pairing process.

Playing Apple Music in Your Car via Bluetooth:

  1. On your paired phone, open the Apple Music app.
  2. Browse your music library, playlists, or albums within the Apple Music app to find the song or playlist you'd like to play.
  3. Select the song, album, or playlist by tapping on it. The music will start playing to your car's audio system automatically.
  4. Use the volume controls on your car's audio system to adjust the sound to your liking.
  5. You can also control playback (pause, play, skip tracks) from your car's audio system or steering wheel controls.

Method 3: Use Auxiliary Cables

You'll need an AUX cable (also known as a 3.5mm audio cable) and, in some cases, a headphone jack adapter. Ensure the cable's length is suitable for reaching your device and the car's AUX input.

  1. Find the AUX input in your car, which is typically a 3.5mm audio jack. It's often labeled as "AUX" or "Line-In" and can be located on the car's dashboard, center console, or inside the glove compartment.
  2. Plug one end of the AUX cable into your device's headphone jack or the headphone jack adapter.
  3. Plug the other end of the AUX cable into the car's AUX input.
  4. Turn on your car's audio system and switch the source to "AUX" or "Line-In" to hear the audio from your device.

Method 4: Use FM Transmitter

FM transmitters are a wireless solution for playing Apple Music in older car models that lack modern connectivity options like Bluetooth or AUX inputs. These devices convert your smartphone's audio into FM radio signals, allowing you to tune in through your car's radio system. Here's how to set up and use an FM transmitter:

Setting Up and Using an FM Transmitter

  1. Connect the FM transmitter to a power source, usually through your car's cigarette lighter socket (12V adapter).
  2. Turn on your car's radio and select an FM frequency that's clear of local stations. You'll use this frequency for broadcasting your device's audio.
  3. On the FM transmitter, choose the same FM frequency you selected on your car radio. Most transmitters have a digital display for easy tuning.
  4. Connect your smartphone or audio source to the FM transmitter using a compatible cable (often a 3.5mm audio cable or via Bluetooth, depending on the transmitter model).
  5. Play your desired music or audio on your device, such as Apple Music. The FM transmitter will broadcast this audio on the chosen FM frequency.
  6. Tune your car's radio to the selected FM frequency. You should now hear the audio from your device through your car's speakers.

Method 5: Use USB Drive/SD Card

To transfer Apple Music playlists to a USB drive or SD card, you can use a tool like ViWizard Apple Music Converter. This software can convert Apple Music tracks to MP3 format, which is widely compatible with most car audio systems. If you have already stored your Apple Music playlists in your USB drive or SD card, simply connecting it and playing music in the car.

Downloading Apple Music Playlists to MP3:

  1. Launch ViWizard Apple Music Converter and log in to your Apple Music account.
  2. Select the Apple Music playlists or songs you want to transfer.
  3. Choose MP3 as the output format.
  4. Click "Convert" to start the conversion process. Once finished, your Apple Music will be in MP3 format.
apple music playlist to mp3
How to Apple Music Playlists and Library to MP3

Wanna download your Apple Music playlists in MP3s to all your devices? You can benefit from this tutorial to get some free MP3 files and bring to your iPhone.

Transferring Apple Music Playlists to USB Drive/SD Card:

  1. Insert a USB drive or SD card into your computer.
  2. Locate the converted MP3 files on your computer and copy them to the USB drive or SD card.

Connecting and Playing Apple Music in Your Car:

  1. In your car, locate the USB port or SD card slot. These are usually located in the car's dashboard, center console, or glove compartment.
  2. Carefully insert your USB drive or SD card into the appropriate port.
  3. Turn on your car's audio system and select the USB drive or SD card as the audio source.
  4. Use your car's controls to browse and select the MP3 files or playlists you want to listen to. With your USB drive or SD card connected, you can now enjoy your Apple Music playlists in your car without the need for a smartphone connection.

Part 2. How to Listen to Apple Music Offline in a Car

Offline listening allows you to enjoy your favorite Apple Music songs and playlists even when you don't have an internet connection. If you have Apple Music subscription, here's how to download music for offline use on both iOS and Android devices:

Downloading Apple Music on iOS/Android Phones:

  1. Launch the Apple Music app on your phone.
  2. Browse and find the songs, albums, or playlists you want to download.
  3. To download specific songs, tap the three dots (ellipsis) next to the song or album title, then tap "Download." To download an Apple Music playlist, tap the download icon next to the playlist title.

Playing Apple Music Offline in Your Car:

ios apple music downloaded

  1. Launch the Apple Music app on your Android device.
  2. Go to the "Library" section in Apple Music and select "Downloaded" to access your offline collection.
  3. Find and play your downloaded songs, albums, or playlists in Apple Music.

Converting Apple Music to Your Car:

While enjoying Apple Music on your iPhone or Android device is convenient, what if your car isn't compatible with the Apple Music app, or you simply want to enjoy your music without relying on a smartphone connection? You might think you're stuck with limitations, but here's the solution:

The primary challenge in playing Apple Music offline is the DRM (Digital Rights Management) copyright protection applied to the songs. This protection restricts you from playing and sharing Apple Music outside of its own app. However, there's a powerful solution that can help you break free from these constraints: ViWizard Apple Music Converter. This software is designed to convert Apple Music songs into universal audio formats like MP3, eliminating DRM restrictions and allowing you to enjoy your music without any limitations.

audio converter

Key Features of ViWizard Audio Converter

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  • Convert songs, albums, and playlists from Apple Music to MP3
  • Remove DRM protection from Apple Music, iTunes, and Audible
  • Save the converted audios with the original quality and ID3 tags
  • Support the conversion of up to 100 audio formats to others

With ViWizard Apple Music Converter, you have the best alternative for playing Apple Music offline, especially if you decide to discontinue your Apple Music subscription. Begin by downloading your Apple Music playlists to MP3:

Step 1Add Apple Music files to the converter

Launch the software on your comptuer after completing the installation. You can click Add Files on the main interface to find Apple Music songs which you already downloaded and then select the music you want to convert.

add apple music songs

Step 2Set MP3 as the output audio format

Generally MP3 is the most popular format which supposed to be supported by any audio player in the car, so MP3 is recommended. Click the Format button to set the output audio format, bit rate, sample rate, channel, and codec for Apple Music.

set output settings

Step 3Start to export Apple Music to MP3

Now click the Convert button to start the conversion of Apple Music. Then ViWizard Audio Converter will help you remove DRM from Apple Music and export unprotected Apple Music songs to the folder you specified.

convert apple music to mp3

Step 4Play Apple Music in car via USB

After conversion, you will have full control over those unprotected Apple Music files. You can either transfer those files to a USB drive or your device. Then you can directly stream Apple Music in the car through USB drive. For your device, you can try the similar ways to connect it via Bluetooth, transmitter or an USB cable to stream Apple Music to your car entertainment system.

Part 3. How to Stop Apple Music from Automatically in a Car

While controlling Apple Music playback in the car is made convenient through CarPlay or Android Auto, occasional issues arise, such as the automatic playback of music when you least expect it. If you've encountered the situation where Apple Music starts playing on its own in your car, you may wonder how to regain control. We present the most effective solutions to prevent Apple Music from auto-playing in your car, ensuring a smoother and more tailored in-car music experience.

apple music automatically playing
How to Stop Apple Music from Automatically Playing [Updated Recently]

How to stop Apple Music from playing automatically? In this article, you'll find several methods to disable Apple Music from playing automatically.

Method 1: Disable Bluetooth Auto-Connect

If your car automatically connects to your smartphone via Bluetooth and starts playing music, you can prevent this by disabling the auto-connect feature on your phone. Find "Automatically Connect" (iOS) and "Media audio" or "Audio" (Android) for your car's Bluetooth system.

Method 2: Adjust Apple Music Settings

You can configure settings within the Apple Music app to prevent it from playing automatically when connected to your car, such as Autoplay.

Method 3: Use Do Not Disturb While Driving (iOS Only)

If you have an iPhone, you can enable the "Do Not Disturb While Driving" feature to reduce distractions and prevent automatic music playback.

ios focus do not disturb off

Method 4: Adjust Car Audio Settings

Some car audio systems have settings that allow you to control how they interact with connected devices. Check your car's audio system manual or settings menu for options related to Bluetooth or audio playback. You may find settings to disable automatic playback.

Method 5: Disconnect Bluetooth Manually or via Siri Shortcuts

You can manually disconnect your smartphone from your car's Bluetooth system when you enter the car or use a Siri shortcut. This way, you can control when you want to play Apple Music.


That's all, and if you are a subscriber to Apple Music, you could use the above methods to play Apple Music in the car when you are driving outside. Or you can think about using ViWizard Audio Converter to get DRM-free Apple Music files, then you can freely enjoy Apple Music in the car without limits.

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