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I newly have a Sony Xperia 10/III (XQ-BT52) with Android 12 (all updates installed - 60.1.A.0.533)

This problem did not appear on my last Samsung A40 phone with exactly this headset.

I have a Bluetooth headset with a single play/pause button, and when connected and playing music with the Spotify App, I see the following behavior:

  • While music is playing, I can press once to pause the playback.
    • Specifically, when Spotify is the active music player, nothing happens on once-press while playback is paused.
  • I cannot press play/pause once to start the playback again.
  • Sometimes I can do a double-press to skip to the next song (which will start it when paused)
  • Sometimes a double-press will start "redial last number" of the phone app.
  • Long-press will always open up Google Assistant.

This happens regardless of whether the Spotify app is open in the foreground or is playing with a "notification" on the lock screen.

I have cross checked with the built-in Sony music player as well as YT Music: Both react to play (sometimes only after entering the lock screen). (Note that I never even had opened these two apps before trying to crosscheck this)

Since I have to assume that Spotify can react to the play signal in principle -- after all it worked on my Samsung with Android 9/10) -- my theory here is that some apps are "fighting" over who get's to react to a certain BT command -- as shown by the flaky reaction to the double-press on the headphones.

How can I get to the bottom of this without randomly resetting stuff, clearing caches and generally Turning it Off And On Again??

Note: Personally I'm a Windows SW developer in C#/C++, but I never have done any development or debugging work with Android. So answers feel free to be as technical as you like, but don't assume I know anything 'bout Android dev :-)

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    Isolate variables: try a different headset (different model/brand).
    – jcollum
    May 11 at 20:14

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