iOS 17.1.1 Fixes BMW Charging but GM Owners Are Having Problems

Escalade Credit: Cadillac
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Last week, Apple pushed out iOS 17.1.1 with a fix for a problem related to wireless charging in BMWs, but now it appears that whatever Apple did to make the iPhone 15 play better with BMW vehicles hasn’t fixed wireless charging for some GM models.

It’s perhaps ironic that it’s GM vehicles specifically encountering this problem, considering the automaker’s plans to ditch CarPlay; however, this is likely merely a funny coincidence as we’re confident Apple wouldn’t ever make a software change out of spite.

Most likely, it’s just a matter of the complexities of the code Apple uses to handle wireless charging. Prior to iOS 17.1.1, most BMW owners found that their new iPhone 15 models charged just fine. The problem was that Apple Pay and other NFC technologies tended to stop working after an iPhone 15 had spent some time on a BMW charger.

That’s not what appears to be happening with GM vehicles. As first reported by 9to5Mac, GM owners have been reporting problems charging since updating to iOS 17.1 on the iPhone 15. Posts from folks on Reddit, the GM forums, and Apple’s support forums suggest it’s a widespread issue, although again, it’s a complete failure to charge at all rather than the dodgy NFC experience that BMW drivers were reporting.

There doesn’t yet seem to be a consensus on which specific GM models or years are affected, although the reports include the Chevrolet Blazer, Bolt, and Traverse, Buick Encore, Cadillac models, GMC Silverado and Sierra, and more. Still, some users with older year models, such as the 2022 Chevy Bolt, report that charging works fine for them.

Notably, this appears to be a problem that Apple introduced in iOS 17.1 rather than iOS 17.1.1, although it reportedly remains unfixed even in the current iOS 17.2 betas. GM owners who have reported the problem to Apple say they’ve been told to contact GM, but the fact that wireless charging was working fine with their new iPhone 15 before the iOS 17.1 update suggests this is a problem that Apple needs to fix in an iOS 17 point release, likely by undoing whatever iOS 17.1 did.

Wireless charging can be fickle at the best of times due to the need to accommodate a variety of different smartphones, but that doesn’t appear to be the case here, as many of the complaints are coming from drivers who hadn’t previously experienced this problem. Some have even been able to fix it by downgrading to iOS 17.0.3.

That this issue impacts only the iPhone 15 suggests some internal hardware changes that are unique to those models, as we haven’t seen any reports of similar problems with owners of older iPhones. In fact, several folks reported that things “worked perfectly every time” with the iPhone they had before upgraded to an iPhone 15 Pro. It’s unclear what Apple changed here, but it may be related to the adoption of the new Qi2 charging standard.

A GM spokesperson told The Verge that the carmaker is “aware of this concern” and is investigating it. However, he also added that “there’s nothing we can confirm at this point.” Apple has not yet responded to requests or comment.

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