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How to Connect Android to Pioneer Car Stereo?

What type of connectivity issues are you experiencing with your Pioneer car stereo? 

Is the Bluetooth connection a problem? Are you having trouble connecting the USB type C to your Pioneer stereo? Or perhaps it’s your Android version that’s the problem? 

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Whatever the problem it may be, you may be wondering how to connect your Android device to a Pioneer stereo.

The best way to connect Android to Pioneer stereo is by downloading the Pioneer Smart Sync from Google Store. 

The Smart Sync simplified your Pioneer’s user interface. Instead of operating the Pioneer from the dashboard, the Smart Sync lets you do everything from the phone. Once downloaded, all you need to do is connect the Android phone to the Pioneer receiver. 

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Tip: A simple trick is to make sure both your Android device and the Pioneer car stereo are NOT connected to any other device. 

You can do this by hard resetting the Pioneer in-dash receiver. Simply remove the panel to access the reset hole, then use a pen or paper clip to reset. 

The second trick is the long-pressing volume button (the large, round dial) of the Pioneer stereo for a few seconds. 

This way, the in-dash receiver becomes noticeable, thus making it easy to search and connect to your android device. 

In the article below, I will go through the details of connecting Android phones with Pioneer Car Stereos.

How Do I Connect My Android Phone to My Pioneer Radio?

While connecting is not too difficult for most Pioneer stereos, it’s important to look at step-by-step procedures on how to connect your droid to a Pioneer stereo. 

Bluetooth Pairing

Even though the Pioneer Smart Sync is the best and easier way to connect your Android device to a Pioneer receiver, it works once you’ve paired it with Bluetooth. 

Sounds easy, right? 

Well, that’s half true. It’s quite easy and tricky at the same time. But once you carefully follow the instructions, you’re good. 

You can pair the two (android device + pioneer in-dash receiver) from either end. 

You can choose to either connect from the Android device (phone etc.), or from the stereo, but which one is better? Let’s look at both. 

Pairing From the In-Dash Receiver

Step 01:

The very first step is to make sure both the Android device and the Pioneer receiver are not connected to any devices. 

Then check and confirm that the device has its Bluetooth turned on.

That is, go to your phone’s settings, access the Bluetooth menu and turn it on.

IMPORTANT: check to see that the Bluetooth setting is set to “Visible”, otherwise it won’t connect.

Setting your phone to Visible makes it easier for the in-dash receiver to find your phone. 

Step 02:

Go to the Pioneer receiver and press the telephone button. It’s always at the lower-left corner of the in-dash receiver. 

This sets the receiver to a “phone” mode, which brings up the phone menu.

Scroll the volume button (the large round dial, also known as the MC dial).

Go on scrolling until you see [BT SETTING].

Step 03:

Confirm by pressing at the middle (or center) part of the MC Dial. 

This takes you to the Pioneer’s Bluetooth settings. 

Step 04:

Now it’s time to add the Android device Bluetooth. 

Scroll the MC dial until you see [ADD DEVICE] 

Confirm by pressing the middle part, and you will see the available Bluetooth devices. In addition, if there are other Bluetooth devices ON around the car, you’ll see a list of names. 

Scroll till you see your phone’s Bluetooth name. Then, if you’re not sure, you can go back and recheck the name on your phone. 

Select the Bluetooth name. And press to confirm.

IMPORTANT: If you can’t see your device’s name, press on [RE-SEARCH] to refresh the list.

If there are no devices available, you’ll see [NOT FOUND], which should prompt you to check your device’s Bluetooth setting once more. 

Step 05:

Once you have the right Bluetooth name, a 6-digit number should pop up on both the Pioneer receiver and your android device. 

Press OK on both ends to confirm the Bluetooth pairing. 

This confirms the connection between the Android device and the Pioneer in-dash receiver. 

Pairing From the Android Phone

The process isn’t different from what we’ve already mentioned. The only difference is that you’ll be searching the Pioneer Bluetooth name from the phone. 

Pairing the Pioneer car stereo with the Android device is actually easier when done this way.

Make sure both devices have their Bluetooth turned ON. 

You can revisit steps 02 and 03 above to set up the Pioneer’s Bluetooth. 

Next, press the telephone button, scroll to the BT SETTING and ADD DEVICE. 

Check to make sure the in-dash receiver has its Bluetooth set to “Visible.” 

Then go to your device and navigate to the Bluetooth settings. Search for a new device. 

You’ll see the Pioneer’s Bluetooth name. Pick and confirm the 6-digit number. 

How to Connect Pioneer Smart Sync App?

Now that you’ve paired the Pioneer receiver to the android device via Bluetooth, the next step is to explore the Pioneer Smart Sync app. 

Step One:

Go to Google Store via your android device. 

NB: Make sure to turn on your internet data 

Search for “Pioneer Smart Sync” 

Check for the original Pioneer logo, so you don’t download the wrong app. 

Step Two:

Once you’ve downloaded and installed the app, the next step is to confirm you’ve paired the in-dash receiver to the Android via Bluetooth.

Check the receiver to see if its Bluetooth sign is on. It will be on the receiver’s screen. 

If you’re unsure, you can follow the steps earlier mentioned above. 

Step Three:

It’s time to change the “app settings” for the in-dash receiver. 

Take the volume button and scroll until you reach [APP CONTROL]

Press the middle part of the volume control to enter the app control section. 

Here you’ll see [WIRED], which connects the Android device by wiring the two devices. But that’s not what you want. 

Step Four:

Scroll the volume button once more, and you’ll get the [BLUETOOTH].

Enter by pressing the middle of the vol button.

The in-dash receiver’s screen should read APP CONTROL once again.

At the same time, your Android device screen will pop up with the Smart Sync app opening up.

Step Five:

Confirm the phone’s access to the receiver by reading the “Caution” and pressing OK. 

This last confirmation officially gives your Android phone control over the Pioneer receiver. 

You can now control everything on the in-dash receiver from your phone. 

IMPORTANT: You can choose to set the Smart Sync app to connect to the receiver automatically.

After connecting the app, all you have to do is scroll the volume button to [AUTO APP CONNECT] and choose ON. 

In case the Smart Sync app doesn’t seem to connect to the receiver, do the following simple trick: 

Switch on the Smart Sync app on your phone. As it waits to open up, go to the Pioneer receiver and press and hold the volume button for a few seconds. 

Keep holding until the app on the Android phone pops up the caution warning. Then simply press OK on the phone to confirm the connection. 


Let’s take a look at some of the commonly asked questions regarding Pioneer’s connection with Android devices. 

Why My Pioneer Version Doesn’t Connect With My Android Device?

First, you need to ask yourself, “what’s my Pioneer car stereo version?” How can you tell the version you’re using? And is the version up to date?

On the Pioneer official website, you can download the latest Pioneer firmware.

Also, you can determine the type or version of the Pioneer in-dash receiver by checking the sticker at the back.

You’ll find a serial number starting with 2 letters and mixed with numbers. You can then check if it’s compatible with your latest Android version.

This shouldn’t be a problem because most Pioneer receivers are compatible with various android versions.

I’ve Tried Connecting the Pioneer Smart Sync App, but It Doesn’t Seem to Work?

For starters, have you checked the Bluetooth pairing? It’s important for the Pioneer in-dash receiver to be paired with your Android device. 

The Smart Sync app works when the Bluetooth is paired between the two devices. 

Next is to check if your in-dash receiver has the latest firmware. 

You can do this by visiting and downloading the latest firmware. 

Will I Damage and Forfeit My Warranty When I Fix the Pioneer Stereo Connectivity?

The process involved in connecting your android device to a Pioneer receiver is simple. And NO, you won’t be destroying the stereo, neither will you be forfeiting the car’s warranty. 

However, this is a grey area. 

For example, if you damage the Pioneer stereo when trying to repair something else, or you were trying to connect the Android device, but the stereo seemed to be tampered with, then you may lose the warranty. 

But by the time you come to such a situation, then it means you didn’t carefully follow the steps I have mentioned in this article. 

Therefore, if any of the steps mentioned above are out of the ordinary and you can’t connect the Android device, it’s best to leave it to a professional. 

Also, note that a warranty is only required if you are sure the Pioneer hardware is defective. Most cases are only due to minor issues like a bug, which only needs a slight tinkering, and it’s okay. 

Finally, you have to check for your car’s warranty. These are different based on the type of car and different from one state to another. 

How Comes My USB Connection to the Pioneer Stereo Is Not Working?

This may be caused by a compatibility issue. The newer USB-type C phones may not work with the Pioneer receiver. 

This problem is common when using non-certified type C cable or non-compliant extension cables. 

So, what’s the solution? 

The Pioneer stereo experts recommend directly connecting the receiver to the Android device using only certified cables. Always go with those under 3ft in length. 

Also, note that in some vehicles, if you use OE (original equipment) USB ports, you may experience connectivity problems. 

Therefore, try using different USB cables for a change and see if the connection occurs. 

What’s the Right Model for My Pioneer Stereo Bluetooth Pairing With My Android Device?

Although Pioneer stereos come in many different models, most work almost the same. Also, their connection procedures are the same. 

There’s no specific Pioneer model that’s best for your android device’s connection. 

You just need to test your device out. If it works, then you’re good. If it doesn’t, it’s best to update the in-dash receiver’s firmware. 

If that doesn’t seem to work, try updating the Android version. 

But before you do this, make sure you’ve exhausted the possibilities of a poorly connected Pioneer receiver. 

Is Bluetooth Connection the Only Way to Connect My Pioneer Stereo to Android?

You can also connect your Android phone to the Pioneer receiver via USB and have it wired. 

The process is the same as a Bluetooth connection, but the only difference is that you connect the two devices using a USB. 

You’ll then be required to make a settings control on the receiver.

This allows you to control the Android device from the Pioneer in-dash receiver and access your contacts and music saved on the Android device. 

Nonetheless, while other connections are available, Bluetooth is highly recommended because it enables you to further connect the Smart Sync app.

Smart Sync app makes the user interface much easier to operate and control the Pioneer receiver.


When it comes to Pioneer car stereos, they’re the best at offering high-quality sound.

Even though they come in different models, the process of connecting them to android devices is similar.

The simple trick is making sure both the Pioneer receiver and the android device are NOT connected to any other device.

You can then set their connectivity via Bluetooth pairing and the Smart Sync app.

Other tips to connecting Pioneer stereo to Android include:

  • Press and hold the volume button for a few seconds as it reads the Android device.
  • Hard resetting the Pioneer in-dash receiver by hitting its reset hole.