Technology

BMW’s next-gen iDrive system uses AI, 5G to help drivers


First introduced in a BMW 7 Series, 20 years ago, the iDrive system has been constantly improving.

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BMW unveiled its next-generation infotainment system, iDrive 8, designed to act as a digital, intelligent and proactive partner for drivers. The system powered by machine learning, natural language processing, cloud, and 5G will make its debut with the upcoming BMW iX and i4.

First introduced in a BMW 7 Series, 20 years ago, the iDrive system has been constantly improving. The most distinctive new addition on board is the curved display, which combines the 12.3-inch information display and 14.9-inch control display.

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Users can name the upgraded personal assistant that can control ambient climate and lighting, audio playback, opening and closing of side windows, shading of the panoramic glass roof, switching between My Modes, and driver assistance systems. The ‘My Modes’ personalisation feature combines up to 10 different parameters in the vehicle that can be activated with a single command.

The latest infotainment system brings a new BMW Operating System 8 with fully integrated digital services for navigation, parking and charging. Its ‘Learning Navigation’ function can use the habits associated with the individual BMW ID to learn and anticipate driver’s next likely destination. It will also give them information on the current traffic for the journey ahead, and estimated driving time on ‘My BMW’ app.

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“They [BMW cars of today] are permanently connected to the BMW Cloud and therefore benefit from the combined computing power, long-term and real-time data, machine learning, and swarm intelligence generated by the 14 million connected BMW vehicles out on the roads,” the automobile giant said in a release.

The upcoming, BMW iX will be the first premium model available worldwide that is compatible with 5G mobile technology, it noted.

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The new BMW iDrive 8 system will be launched initially with three different modes — Efficient, Sport and Personal. The new system allows Remote Software Upgrade which helps in regular over-the-air improvements, integration of additional functions and staying up to date.

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