Last week, we learned that BMW will be launching wireless charging for EVs, the week before that we learned that most models have wireless smartphone charging and an update is coming soon. BMW is expanding its connected car features for BMW Connected+ more connections than ever before along with Microsoft Office functions coming in the future.
At the start of 2017, BMW used its recently launched 5 Series and BMW Connected Onboard – which made its debut in the new model – to showcase the potential unlocked by digital services in the area of personalization. BMW Connected+ provides a digital bridge between smartphones and vehicles. It delivers the next level of in-car personalization and smartphone content integration on the Control Display. This makes display and operation in the vehicle simpler than ever. At the same time, new services are being introduced that aid individual mobility planning and help users find their way in an ever-more complex world. For the BMW Group, personalization is the key to really staying in tune with the needs of customers and assisting smartphone usage, both inside and outside the vehicle.
The new services from BMW Connected+.
BMW Connected and ConnectedDrive service integration has been developed with the BMW driver’s needs in mind. People want to be productive during their journey, especially business customers. To this end, BMW Connected’s digital services and productivity features help drivers to be as efficient as possible with their daily routines – inside and outside the car – so they can spend more time enjoying life.
Send my Routes to Car: Route planning using a smartphone is now easier than ever. After the destination is entered, BMW Connected+ checks whether the car has enough fuel for the journey. If not, BMW Connected+ suggests a suitable fuel stop along the way, which the user can simply add to their route. The route can then be transferred directly to the vehicle. Once in the vehicle, the scheduled stops are displayed and the route can be initiated with a single click.
Share Live Trip Status: With this new feature, the question “What’s your ETA” is now a thing of the past. Current location and time of arrival can be shared by the driver with business partners, friends or family. The driver can send a link via SMS to the people selected via Share Live Trip Status at the start of the journey or if there are delays en route. Using this link will display the user’s current position on a map, along with the arrival time based on real-time traffic data. The big advantage here is that everyone is kept up to date automatically, allowing the driver to stay focused on arriving safely. There is even an option for those waiting to receive further SMS updates if there are any changes to the arrival time.
Navigate Door-to-Door: Finding a parking place at the end of a journey does not always mean arriving at the final destination. Navigate Door-to-Door is a feature designed to guide users on the final leg of their journey (Last Mile) and back to their car when they are ready (First Mile). Once the car is parked, the driver will receive a message on the car’s display confirming that their smartphone is now ready to provide directions to continue on foot. At the same time, BMW Connected+ sends a push notification to the user’s smartphone to initiate navigation on foot.
If the driver has appointments later in the day, the “Time to Leave Notification” function familiar from BMW Connected can let them know the ideal time to set off in order to arrive punctually. This takes into account the time needed to walk to the BMW and can display navigation information on a smartphone or smartwatch.
My Destinations: This feature provides rapid access from any connected device to both contact information in the user’s address book and the most recently visited destination stored in the navigation system. This intelligent destination search function is linked with the user’s contacts, so choosing the next destination is as simple as entering someone’s name and selecting the associated address.
Thanks to BMW Connected Onboard, BMW Connected+ transforms the user’s vehicle into a personalized control center for digital mobility. Once the driver’s smartphone has seamlessly connected to the car, they can access selected features via the car’s central display.
BMW Connected can be downloaded as a free app for IOS and Android devices. BMW Connected+ comprises additional new digital services which will become available in 28 countries at the end of July via an update release (6.0). To use the app, customers must have a smartphone and their vehicle has to be specified with the option ConnectedDrive Services (6AK).
iPhone Services Powered by Microsoft Azure
Powered by the Open Mobility Cloud, which is based on Microsoft Azure, and available for iOS, BMW Connected is part of the automaker’s vision for the “future of mobility,” which includes digital services, automated driving and assistance, and interiors designed for digital seamlessness. BMW built the Open Mobility Cloud, a new flexible, scalable platform, using Microsoft Azure technologies and tools.
The flexible architecture of the Open Mobility Cloud will allow BMW to easily build new service experiences, incorporate partner content and integrate networked systems like smart homes. That means the experience will steadily grow and improve, and in the future be able to manage car-charging, make parking easier, or tell your house that you’re coming home, prompting smart lights and features to turn on.
Microsoft is working with BMW to integrate its Skype for Business platform into the infotainment systems found in BMW 5 series vehicles. Skype for Business s being added to iDrive, BMW’s infotainment technology to improve collaboration and get drivers to keept their smartphones while they’re behind the wheel.
Skype for Business is coming first to newer BMW 5 series vehicles in the Germany, France and the U.K., with other regions to follow.