How to Set Up CarPlay on a BMW X3

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to setup Apple CarPlay in BMW X3?

When did BMW X3 get Apple CarPlay?
In BMW X3 Apple CarPlay appeared with the coming of the 2017 F25 featuring
NBT Evo ID5/6 iDrive. All later X3s have Apple CarPlay activation optioned

Don’t know which head unit you have? Decode your VIN and we’ll send you
your car specifications via email in the form of a PDF file.

How to add Apple CarPlay to BMW X3Activation optioned in? Well,
unfortunately not all high-tech perks are free and ready to set up right from
the get go ūüėČ BMW likes to hide features in their iDrive systems, especially
the latest ones. Even though they’ve given up on making Apple CarPlay
subscription based, in vehicles like the 2017+ BMW X3 Apple CarPlay is still
available as an option to unlock with coding.

That doesn’t mean of course earlier models have to miss out. With solutions
such as Autosvs’s CarPlay Smartbox Prime retrofit you can add wireless
CarPlay & Android Auto even to your 2010 BMW X3 F25 and transform your
outdated CIC iDrive into a modern infotainment hub.

How to activate CarPlay in a BMW X3?
So let’s say your 2020 BMW X3 Apple CarPlay needs unlocking how do you do
that? You can either spend hours on going to your dealer and have him fix it
for a considerate amount of $$$. Or you can order Autosvs’s BMW Apple CarPlay
activation and have the option unlocked at home within max 30 minutes via USB
or cable coding, depending on your BMW X3 head unit.

USB activation

The USB CarPlay coding process will be fairly straightforward to perform on
your own. All you need to do is to save the coding file that we send to you
in an email to a USB stick and connect it to your car. After following a few
instructions, the Apple CarPlay software will be available on your BMW X3

Check out how the BMW X3 Apple CarPlay activation process might work, with
the example of the BMW G12.

Cable coding

For BMW X3s compatible with cable coding the process will be equally simple
to carry out during a remote coding session with our Autosvs technician. Just
plug in the cable you receive from us, follow the instructions from our
technician and enjoy your Apple CarPlay within 30 minutes. In some cases,
your BMW X3 may additionally need a WiFi antenna to enable a wireless
connection between your iPhone and the head unit. Check here if your vehicle
needs one, and if so order it with us.

How to get full screen Apple CarPlay for BMW X3?
how to get full screen Apple CarPlay for BMW X3Having CarPlay in X3 is
already an advantage, but to uncover its entire potential it’s best to use
the apps at a full screen width, don’t you think? By default, BMW X3 comes
with split-screen CarPlay displaying a total of eight apps per screen. So if
you already have it and you’d like to give your apps more room to shine just
to grasp all the important information at a glance, activate BMW Apple
CarPlay full-screen.  It will allow you
to display your running app on the whole screen width and have as many as ten
apps per page.

If you don’t have Apple CarPlay in your X3 yet, our BMW Apple CarPlay
activation will unlock the full screen mode by default again if applicable
for your car.

How to set up Apple CarPlay in a BMW X3?
Once Apple CarPlay is activated in your BMW X3, it’s time to pair it up
with your iPhone. Here’s how to set it up:

1. Activate Bluetooth and WiFi on your iPhone.
2. Go to the Communication’ menu in your BMW X3’s iDrive.
3. Select Mobile Devices’.
4. Choose New Device’.
5. Pick Phone calls and audio via Bluetooth or Apple CarPlay’.
6. Select your phone on the BMW X3’s screen.
7. Select Pair’ once you see a A Bluetooth Pairing Request’ prompt.
8. Select Allow’ on Allow Contacts and Favorites Sync prompt.
9. Then a Use CarPlay with BMW?’ prompt will automatically appear on your
iPhone. Tap on Use CarPlay’.
10. Again on your BMW X3 screen select’ Confirm note and connect to Apple
11. Choose your phone name under Connected Devices’.
12. Select Connection Mode’ and then Apple CarPlay’
13. Once the Apple CarPlay icon appears on the X3 home screen, press it to
launch CarPlay.
You can go back to your native BMW X3 infotainment system display by
selecting the BMW icon in Apple CarPlay.

How to retrofit Apple CarPlay in BMW X3?
If your BMW X3 F25 was produced before 2017 and misses OEM Apple CarPlay,
you’ve got two options to add it in.

First, is a full BMW X3 F25 head unit upgrade to NBT EVO ID5/6, which comes
with a lot of added benefits, such as a BMW X3 screen upgrade, iDrive Touch
controller, Video & Services in motion, Voice Control, pre-installed
Apple CarPlay functionality and more.

However, if you’re not keen on performing such an advanced project you
might want to consider the second option of including an aftermarket CarPlay
retrofit to your X3.

This hardware upgrade will bring you the functions and look of the wireless
OEM Apple CarPlay and let you display your favorite iPhone apps on your
factory BMW X3 screen. Plus, introduce the Android Auto functionality so that
you and your friends could pair up your Android devices in a breeze as well.
In any case all apps will be available to control using the Siri voice
assistant, iDrive controller or steering wheel buttons you choose the most
convenient way ūüôā

How to install CarPlay Smartbox Retrofit in a BMW X3?

What’s even more convenient about this BMW X3 CarPlay retrofit is its
straightforward plug & play install procedure, making it an approachable
project even for those who are usually not so keen on tinkering under the

The big thing is – it requires no permanent modifications or remote coding
so it’s completely lease friendly and relatively quick to do it on your own.
But that of course depends on your BMW X3 head unit version. For an NBT
iDrive system or newer, 2 hours on average will do. In the case of the CIC
iDrive system, the process may be slightly more complex and require around 4
hours of your spare time.

A basic overview of the BMW CarPlay upgrade install procedure revolves
around disassembling the upper and lower trim as well as the faceplate on the
dash to get to the head unit, where you’ll find yourself unscrewing and
disconnecting different bits. Then, pulling the head unit out and connecting
it to the MMI module with the supplied harness. And lastly plugging in the
new cable from the MMI to the screen.

If your BMW X3 is equipped with a Combox module you’ll additionally have to
run one cable from the MMI to the OEM microphone in the headliner and another
to the AUX port in the armrest both cables will be supplied.

Take a look how the CarPlay installation for BMW X3 might look like:

BMW Apple CarPlay installation near me
BMW X3 CarPlay retrofit was made with DIYers in mind meaning all
installation projects are backed up by step-by-step PDF instructions and
video tutorials, as well as full over-the-phone or email support of our
technicians. NO ONE will be left alone in this ūüėČ

However, if DIYing is truly out of the question for you and you’d rather
give away such a project in the hands of experienced technicians close to
your place, our authorized installers might perform the installation for you.
Just give them a call to schedule the session.

other BMW X3 upgradesFor folks who hunger for even more high-tech for their
X3s, there’s a pile of upgrades taking your vehicle into 2022. From 6WB
cluster and navigation retrofits, through plenty of coding options, to backup
cameras and BMW audio upgrades you’ll surely find something that meets your
eye and makes your urban SUV stand out from the crowd.

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