Cars & Technology04 Oct 2017

BMW Group is increasing the intelligent connectivity capabilities of its vehicles by integrating Alexa, Amazon’s voice-controlled personal assistant, into all BMW and MINI models from mid-2018. The addition of a cloud-based voice service will enable BMW Group customers to access a variety of services, entertainment and shopping facilities while on the road by simple interaction. Tens of thousands of Alexa skills that can be accessed from Echo devices will now also be available for in-car use.

BMW Connected skill for Alexa has been available since September 2016, and has allowed users to ask Alexa to check information such as the state of charge or fuel level, or control their car via Remote Services from their home. Alexa also makes it possible to consult appointments or scheduled routes and departure times with the help of the BMW Connected mobility agenda.

“By making this step of integrating Alexa into our models from mid-2018, BMW and MINI will form a more intrinsic part of our customers’ digital lifestyles,” said Dieter May, Senior Vice President Digital Services and Business Models at the BMW Group. “Voice control first featured in BMW Group cars many years ago, and we are now enhancing its functionality by adding a digital ecosystem, which will open up all sorts of new possibilities that customers can access quickly, easily and safely from their car.”

Drivers can listen to their favourite playlist by using voice command while on the road

For example, drivers can find out which movies are currently showing at the local cinema, listen to their favourite playlist or find out the weather at their destination by voice command while on the move. If the driver realises during a journey that they have forgotten something, they can ask Alexa to place an online order. A smartphone is not required to benefit from Alexa, as all BMW models and selected MINI vehicles come equipped with a built-in SIM card.

“We are excited to work with BMW to bring the Alexa experience to their drivers,” said Ned Curic, Vice President of Alexa Automotive. “Using your voice to enjoy content and interact with Alexa makes a great driving experience even better. We can’t wait for BMW customers to try this out.”

From mid-2018 Amazon Alexa will be available in all BMW vehicles in the UK. Learn more about the existing BMW ConnectedDrive Services here.

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