My iPhone 3GS has decided to pause music playing when the headphone plug happens to move a bit or to start playing music without warning for the same reason. Sometimes it also skips to the next song or podcast. It's very annoying.

Is there some way to tell my iPhone not to do that?

The headphones are original Apple headphones for the iPhone. I bought two pairs and it happens with both pairs but only with that iPhone. I have a second iPhone 3GS which doesn't appear to react like that.

  • Maybe some dust got stuck in the iPhone. Try to (gently) blow air into it. – nohillside Jun 28 '12 at 16:44
  • This happens to me when lint gets inside the headphone jack. I usually take a safety pin or fish hook and pull it out. Blowing in it like @patrix said might work, though, depending on how thick the material is. – Andrew Larsson Jun 29 '12 at 16:10
  • Still does it. I don't understand how lint could do that. Any other ideas? – Andrew J. Brehm Jun 30 '12 at 21:47

It happens because a quick jog of the plug causes a short interruption in line level. It's the same with headphones -- Apple or otherwise -- that include a play/pause button (usually place on the cable itself, where it splits to go to each ear). That button functions in exactly the same way, by momentarily interrupting line-level on the phone's cables. iTunes starts playing because it assumes the interruption from plug movement (or a dirty plug) is a play/pause signal. As a simple demonstration, start iTunes playing something and wiggle the phones jack, same conditions as make iTunes launch and play, only if it's already playing this will make it pause.

  • This happens on other devices too. Finally figured this out on my 2014 MacbookPro – s g Nov 4 '15 at 1:01
  • Finally an explanation. Thanks for the short but explanatory answer. – Alenanno Dec 19 '19 at 14:03

I've tried many of the fixes on here, NONE of them worked... I noticed my phone was showing "Less than 20% battery"... Maybe... Took it home, charged it.. No more pausing... Maybe the issue is no more than that! I'm using the same headphones, and the podcasts have been playing without issue...

Good luck!

  • I think you are right. I recall that this only seemed to happen evenings, when the battery was close to empty. It never happened in the mornings. I'll test it and then accept the answer. – Andrew J. Brehm Jun 6 '13 at 12:43

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