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Which phone for 2021 R1250RT?

Peter Room

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Peter Room

My current phone is too old to run the BMW connectivity app or 5G, so I need to buy a new one that will suit my new R1250RT.  I have seen posts on problems with the BMW app and with vibrations and heat damaging some phones, but no list of phones which work well with the R1250RT. 


Essential specs seem to be:

    Size:                         The bike user manual says to fit into the right hand storage compartment cradle, up to 162 x 78 x 8.8mm  = diagonal 7.08 inches
    Network:                  5G 
    Operating system:  The BMW motorad website says up-to-date Android or iOS
    Phone charging:      Wireless/induction 


but.... I ride in Australia which can get very hot in summer, so I am wondering if I should not keep a phone in the bike's storage compartment even though it has a cooling fan. 

As well, possible damage from vibration & rough roads, and the need to check in at every cafe and gas station here via a QR code Covid19 app, inclines me towards keeping my phone in a pocket - which would mean that the physical size of the phone and inductive charging would not be issues.


If you have a phone that works well with your R1250RT and the BMW connectivity app, I would very much like to know the phone's make and model, and where you keep it and how you charge it while riding.

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I am in Perth, but I only had the bike since the end of May, so have not gone through real western heat yet. To date I think the hottest it got to was 34 C. With that in mind I never had phone overheating issues with the iPhone 12 Pro Max I am using. The downside is that I have to take it out of its cover to fit in the compartment. Non max versions should fit with cover and all. Wireless charging works fine, I just need to insert the phone "foot first" to stop turning off the screen as it slips in (buttons get brushed on the side when the phone goes in the "right" way). This phone is probably the biggest you can physically fit in the cubby.


I have not tried an Android phone, but I probably would not either if media play was important to you as it seems that playlist use and song title display seems better with iOS, but Android users tend to complain less about connectivity issues. Personally I have a very stable eco system on my bike with the only crashes/disconnects happening if the app crashes, but I don't use media at all and i have voice guidance for routing turned off. It is important to keep everything up to date, especially the bike software, currently at version 12_007_030 and the app at 4.0 on both iOS and Android.


No system is perfect so you will likely encounter some issues with either of the operating systems, but if you follow a basic set of "rules" it will be usable over 90% of the time. Worst case you need to pull over to restart the bike. This is the picture I get from forum users here and the other big BMW touring forum. Seems like all the idiots gather on Facebook, as the groups over there seem to have the most whinging and moaning about the issues with the least number of solutions. I would not recommend that farce to assist with this.

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I have a dedicated Samsung S9. Not 5g..dont see why thats needed...especially in Aussie country rides. 

I also was concerned about heat and have watched it. So far no issues. But I did open the compartment lid just to see if any difference. Again no issues. 

I agree with the iPhone being better for music. In fact I dont even get an option to have a playlist whereas my mate who is on a GSA does. 

Connection wise have had no issues. 

S9 is still a "current phone" but you can pick them at a good price 2nd hand.

I chose to have a dedicated phone to eliminate any connection issues. I have limited what is on the phone..only ride related apps. My phone stays on me...bike phone stays on the bike. So far so good.

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