Skip to main content

Mercedes’ wireless charger doesn’t play nice with the iPhone X

Mercedes’ wireless charger doesn’t play nice with the iPhone X


When the music stops

Share this story

Photo: Micah Singleton / The Verge

I’m driving a new 2017 Mercedes E300 today, and it comes with a built-in wireless charger, which is a nice feature for a $60,000 car. Now, let’s overlook the poor placement of the charger — buried behind the cupholders, for some reason — and get to the main issue.

If you have an iPhone 8 or iPhone X, which come with wireless charging, you can charge your phone on the pad, unlike previous iPhones. But there is a major flaw that keeps driving me crazy, and it’s Apple Pay. Since the charging pad also has NFC, the iPhone thinks you’re trying to pay for something and automatically activates Apple Pay every time you put the phone down to charge.

Seems like a small issue, right? Well if you’re playing music in your car from your phone, as one might do, activating Apple Pay will automatically pause the music, because I guess Apple thinks you should be polite to the cashier (you should).

Back to the main point: in a 2017 Mercedes E-Class that starts at $52,000, you cannot put your phone down on a wireless charger without activating Apple Pay and pausing your music.

So, how will it fix this? Apple sure as hell isn’t going to change the way Apple Pay functions, and Mercedes seemingly doesn’t have a way to deactivate NFC. Your options are either to reach behind the cupholder to where the phone sits and deactivate Apple Pay and hit play on your music every time you put your phone on the charger without crashing, or use an old-fashioned wired charger to keep your iPhone topped off.

Neither of these options is fun.