• Beau Steward

Subaru Outback And The Weird Wireless Charger Option

Updated: Oct 21, 2020

As I've owned my Outback over time, I'm learning of its quirks and its features, and Subaru's weird decisions. One of those weird decisions was the option for a wireless charger for your phone. When I was shopping for an Outback XT, I didn't really care for the option, but it seemed like every blue Outback XT my lease guy could find included it. I ended up shrugging it off as he negotiated the cost of the option out of the price.

The slot is quite handy, actually. I've found it weird that in the past decade of smartphones there is not a dedicated place for it in our cars yet. Well, here it is. It's a slot that can hold even large smart phones, and with the wireless charging option, it will charge your phone without the need for wires.

Neat, right?

Well, what if you want to use Apple CarPlay? This is where the wireless charging option gets a bit weird.

Apple CarPlay can be done wirelessly, but the head unit must support it. Pretty much all of the latest iOS devices support it, so it's up to the head unit. Subaru does not equip their vehicles with this capability, apparently. So I have to plug my iPhone into the car to use CarPlay.

So why is there a wireless charger? I have to plug it in anyway!

I don't have a functioning Android phone at the moment so I can't say whether the wireless Android Auto works. I suspect it probably doesn't.

It's a good thing the price of the option was negotiated out of the cost of my vehicle. If I paid for this feature and discovered it's completely useless, I'd be livid. Why did Subaru make this an option without also including wireless CarPlay?

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