BMW Adds Alexa Assistant to their Line
Bavarian Motor Works has announced that it is adding Alexa Voice Assistant to its 2018 line of BMW and MINI cars. Alexa, a cloud-based service that is voice activated, is powered by Amazon, the online retail giant who has recently expanded their scope of services to include Alexa voice-activated modules inside the homes of consumers. Meanwhile, auto manufacturers have been attempting to perfect voice-activated services for years. These previous voice activated assistants could be finicky and narrow in scope, but Alexa has a dazzling array of potential uses, from creating playlists to giving traffic updates. Amazon calls these uses “skills.” Alexa is said to have tens of thousands of existing skills already, with more added with each passing day.
Voice assistant modules like Alexa are increasing in popularity, and Alexa is one of the more popular services available. Others, like Google Home, have already been added to competing manufacturer’s models, including Mercedes Benz’s line of cars, which will also feature an Amazon Alexa module.
A Special Bond Between Alexa and BMW
But the Alexa features on the BMW line will be a class apart, with car-specific skills integrated. Drivers can use the app to check on the car’s tire pressure, fuel, or battery levels with a simple voice command. There’s also no need for drivers to use their phones while driving; Alexa features are integrated into BMW’s infotainment system, which was announced last year.
This system, which was first featured on the 5 series in 2017, features gesture activation, voice activation, and an iDrive knob, so that drivers can operate the system safely and without distraction. On the 5 series, the infotainment console features a 10.5” display with impressive responsiveness. By adding Amazon Alexa to their arsenal, the BMW group has created an infotainment package that is unmatched in its category, and it will be featured as a standard component in all 2018 BMW and MINI cars.