The team over at BMW have decided to make lateness an obsolete concept.
BMW vehicles retain an unrivalled reputation for long-term reliability and high-end performance, so getting behind the wheel of one seldom puts drivers at risk of falling behind schedule. Unless, of course, the traffic doesn’t comply.
With the ConnectedDrive Cloud information application, even that hurdle has been eliminated. Your car will be able to predict how long your commute will take according to current traffic conditions, remind you how long it will take to stop off and pick up some food, text ahead if you’re going to be late, and sync with your calendar to let you know about upcoming events. Essentially, the team over at BMW have decided to make lateness an obsolete concept.
Of course, elements of the ConnectedDrive package will be familiar to many car owners. Wi-Fi hot spots, condition reports on your mobile, and live traffic information, while still cutting-edge, aren’t unheard of applications. But this is the first time such amenities have been fused together to create something more ambitious, and the whole is certainly greater than the sum of its parts.
This isn’t even to be an exclusive suite of features. According to BMW officials, there are between 300,000 and 350,000 cars on the road capable of using the system, plus half a million that are already connected with an active SIM card. Even better, the necessary SIM card comes free for life, and it will constantly learn about your driving habits, becoming familiar with common routes in order to provide a more convenient service. When you upgrade, the SIM card accompanies you with all information ready to roll in your new ride.
Dieter May, Vice President of Digital Services, dubs the ConnectedDrive package as a manifestation of BMW’s “next phase of digitisation”, noting that a recent McKinsey report suggests that 37% of younger premium car owners would be willing to switch manufacturers if their digital experiences weren’t on par with what the competition could offer.
Volvo currently stands closest to BMW thanks to the connectivity features integrated in their new XC90, but the position is merely a distant second. BMW seems to have firmly outstripped the competition by innovating above and beyond industry standards.
The automotive industry has developed an obsession with automation technology, but the current trends are geared more towards safety than convenience, as the increasing prevalence of features such as adaptive cruise control and lane departure warning systems continues to demonstrate. BMW are taking the concept further.