How to Fix WhatsApp Not Working on CarPlay

WhatsApp is the top mobile messaging app 5 photos
Photo: autoevolution
Disabling Face ID on WhatsAppDisabling Face ID on WhatsAppDisabling Face ID on WhatsAppDisabling Face ID on WhatsApp
WhatsApp is without a doubt the world’s number one mobile messaging app, and statistics shared earlier this year revealed the Facebook-owned company had two billion monthly active users as of March 2020.
In other words, two billion people use WhatsApp every month to chat, share photos and video, make calls, and create groups, either for personal stuff or for work.

And needless to say, given the health crisis that’s yet to come to an end, the use of WhatsApp is likely to continue to increase even more as people need convenient and straightforward solutions to stay in touch with each other.

WhatsApp is one of the companies that tried to bring its apps exactly in those places where its users are, and these include not only mobile phones but also desktop computers and cars.

While on the desktop, you can connect to WhatsApp via the web or using a dedicated desktop client; in the car the app is available thanks to Android Auto and CarPlay. But of course, it doesn’t come with a dedicated messaging experience, as it’s all controlled with digital assistants like Google Assistant and Siri.

So, in theory, you can rely on the assistant to read a message you receive on WhatsApp, thus letting you focus on the road but continue the conversation with your contacts at the same time.

WhatsApp on CarPlay

On CarPlay, WhatsApp is handled like any other messaging app out there, so when you receive a new message, you should see a notification showing up on the screen.

Tapping this notification instructs Siri to read the content of the message, then let you respond with another message. Of course, this mostly comes in handy when using WhatsApp and Siri in a supported language, such as English, as otherwise, you might have a hard time understanding the message.

But while the experience with WhatsApp is supposed to be rather straightforward, some users discovered the app no longer works on CarPlay, as it displays an error on launch.

In other words, Siri can no longer read the content of the message, so WhatsApp is more or less useless when CarPlay is running on the screen.

The problem and how to fix it

While at first glance, this sounds like something that would require a fix from WhatsApp, it doesn’t, and it all comes down to a setting that users enable on their iPhone without them knowing this breaks down the CarPlay support.

If anything, the Facebook-owned company should add more information within the app to warn users CarPlay would no longer be able to read the messages when this feature is enabled, but other than that, this is by design and is not exactly an issue per se.

The setting is related to Face ID and Touch ID integration, as locking WhatsApp with one of the two blocks CarPlay from reading your messages. And this makes total sense, as the purpose of this extra security measure is to prevent others from getting access to your conversations.

As long as Touch ID or Face ID is enabled in WhatsApp, the app no longer works on CarPlay, so the workaround is actually disabling this feature completely.

To do this, open WhatsApp and go to Settings > Account > Privacy > Screen Lock and then tap the toggle next to Face ID or Touch ID to disable this extra protection. You’ll be required to authenticate one last time before making the changes.

Needless to say, this means the extra security would no longer be enabled on your phone, so if you want to continue using it on your mobile device just make sure you disable this setting before launching CarPlay.
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About the author: Bogdan Popa
Bogdan Popa profile photo

Bogdan keeps an eye on how technology is taking over the car world. His long-term goals are buying an 18-wheeler because he needs more space for his kid’s toys, and convincing Google and Apple that Android Auto and CarPlay deserve at least as much attention as their phones.
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