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Hands-free audio tip

Posted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 9:21 am
by Stephen Hart
So here's the problem in a car that does not have USB or BlueTooth audio connections*:

You're driving along and want to pause a podcast, but the screen has locked. The normal procedure would be to wake the screen, swipe to unlock, visually find the pause button in, then tap it. That could be downright unsafe. Unplugging the audio cord also pauses a podcast, but that's also fairly difficult one handed.

Several audio players have a customizable touch interface. For example, you could set it to pause and resume with a single tap. Double tap to rewind 30 seconds, etc. Here's one ... mpt=uo%3D4
The obvious disadvantage is that it's yet another app to deal with.

Siri can't pause a podcast playing in the Podcasts app. She says "Sorry, Stephen, I can't do that. You're not listening to the Music app." (I've sent feedback to Apple on this.) One way around that is to delete Then you use Music for podcasts as in days of yore. Siri can control the Music app.

But in testing this, I discovered this great trick:

While audio is playing, press and hold the Home button. (Easy to do without looking.) That pauses the podcast and you hear the Siri chime. You can just ignore Siri. Press the Home button again to resume play.

If you do have a car with USB or BlueTooth, it's probably worth the slight extra hassle to set that up and get used to using it. Having steering-wheel buttons for audio control is an excellent safety feature. Many cars require that you set up BlueTooth when the car is parked.

(I've put this in the iOS section because I think it'll apply to iPads as well as iPhones. I can't test that.)