I am encountering a weird bluetooth issue and even after extensive googling I don’t have so much of a start of an idea what is going on. Here is the situation:

I have a Jabra elite 65t headset which is paired with both my mac (mid 2018 hardware, latest mojave version) and my iphone as I use it for listening on both devices. When I take them out of the case and they turn on they always connect to both devices if they are in range (no matter if the mac is open and running or in standby mode). So far all good. When my mac is open and I am working on it I can listen to music on either device, do calls with my phone through the bluetooth headset no problem. But when I am on the go and have my macbook in my backpack, pull out my earphones and they connect to both devices it is impossible to play music from my phone: The music player (tried apple music, spotify and soundcloud) indicates the music is playing but I don’t hear anything and after 0.5 seconds it switches back to paused. I can’t play anything until I open the macbook and disconnect the headphones/turn off bluetooth on the Mac. Sometimes my Mac also disconnects for a second and the reconnects with the headphones, in that case music also all of a sudden works again. At first I thought it is a spotify issue but it affects all audio output of the phone which is linked to a play/pause, it’s as if the mac would always send a pause signal when I start playing music on the phone.

I have tried to prevent my mac from auto connecting to bluetooth headsets with the defaults command for that but my headphones still autoconnect.

I have no idea what is going wrong, any ideas?

  • Try leaving the Mac at home, and running exclusively through your phone. Try leaving the phone at home and... Which device does your headphones prefer? Try taking the Mac out of the backpack. Is there metal in backpack? It takes only little to squash Bluetooth. Car seats have metal in them which may be messing with your Bluetooth. Go you have both devices connected to cell for music service, or does one feed the other via WiFi? Jan 28 '19 at 3:51
  • 2
    It looks like I actually found the issue: The problem disappears if I quit Spotify on the mac before closing it. As far as I can tell now it is the open, paused spotify that is causing the issue. Super random but I don’t have the issue with any other app.
    – Robin
    Feb 5 '19 at 16:19
  • 1
    I have this same exact issue on my mac, Android phone and any media app. I have the Jabra elites and the only solution is to turn off Bluetooth on lid close on my mac
    – Kaito
    Jul 25 '19 at 21:11
  • Have the same issue, MacBook pro 2018, latest update. Samsung galaxy s9 +. Spotify Can play music on the phone while the macbook is in the backpack Aug 23 '19 at 2:01
  • I think I can confirm this. Jabra Elite Active 75t simultaneously paired to iPhone 6s and 2019 MacBook Pro running macOS Catalina. I had been playing music on the MBP through Firefox + YouTube Music. Pause YouTube on laptop, try to play anything on iPhone (tried two or three apps), and phone plays no audio for 1–2 s and then pauses. I closed Firefox—which was paused and not supposed to be playing audio—and then I can play audio from the iPhone. Can't immediately reproduce after restarting Firefox, so not sure what causes this. FF keeping audio device open for some reason?
    – Dale
    Apr 19 '21 at 3:51

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