BMW is preparing the biggest update to its upcoming infotainment system, including new map features, wireless Android Auto and support for Apple’s iOS 14 iPhone Digital Key, according tomedia reports. Starting in July 2020, BMW will be pre-installed in the BMW OS 7 (BMW Operating System 7) on the new model, and the new 5 Series will be the first to be pre-installed. So what is particularly exciting for this new system?
BMW said the system would be available from the third quarter of 2020, but so far it has not announced which models will be compatible with the OS 7. Those who receive support will receive free OTAs. It is understood that one of the most controversial features of the new system should be the newly expanded BMW ConnectedDrive Store, which will allow drivers to temporarily purchase features of vehicles they did not purchase on the first day.
The most obvious change, however, should be the map system. The new BMW Map will be highly dependent on cloud computing and will take advantage of the car’s embedded data connections for smarter routing.
The search bar will provide free text input or natural language search escants. The search results will now also include relevant information, such as business hours and ratings in the destination. There are also parking conditions, such as predicting how likely it is to find a parking space on the street, identifying open spaces, and even taking into account the size of the vehicle so that drivers don’t try to cram an X7 into a parking space more suitable for the M2.
While cars will be able to calculate routes offline, real-time traffic information will also be taken into account as the cloud joins. BMW will combine this data with historical and forecast data, and then automatically adjust the route to changes in road conditions. In fact, each BMW equipped with the system acts as a road traffic data point, with anonymous feedback on current traffic flow and congestion levels.
BMW has also increased its support for eDrive as more cities set up so-called “green zones” that allow only electric cars to pass. The plug-in hybrid car automatically switches to pure electric mode after entering the area.
Making electric cars simpler is a major area of concern for BMW OS 7, especially as automakers prepare for upcoming models such as iNEXT. The new charger management features will support scheduling, historical charging records, and push notifications, while public charger data will be improved. It will not only show the location of the charger but also show availability, which charging network, opening hours, and so on.
The charge near each location will also be listed, and the newly optimized electric vehicle route planner will be able to proactively add charging station information to the planned trip. When the electric car is finished, a blue overlay will be displayed on the map to show the range of the current charge.
iPhone Digital Key and Wireless Android Auto
For those who recently used the iPhone and iOS 14, BMW announced last week that it was adding support for the Digital Key feature at WWDC 2020. The system will use NFC to verify access to the car via the iPhone and to share licenses with other drivers.
Although the new 2021 BMW 5 Series is the main push for the iPhone Digital Key, the technology will in fact be supported in almost all of BMW’s models made this month.
At the same time, for Android users, BMW has enabled not only Android Auto but also wireless. This is still relatively rare in the current automotive market. It supports not only car displays on the center console but also Google Maps navigation on the dashboard, and, if installed, head-up display.
BMW’s Intelligent Personal Assistant is becoming more talkative
BMW OS 7’s voice control system adds features that include more dialogue interactions. It will control vehicle functions such as opening and closing windows, switching different driving modes, etc.
BMW promised that the assistant would also provide more proactive support features, such as possible voice commands on the display based on context. Depending on the speaker, the system is also better able to distinguish between the driver and the passenger.
But arguably the most useful feature is that the assistant can help with everyday life without being asked. The new automated program will trigger certain features based on where to get, such as BMW’s recommendation that drivers set them up to automatically open the driver’s window when entering the work parking lot so that passes can be scanned more quickly.