BMW drivers just got a little more connected.
The luxury carmaker announced it will offer voice connectivity on new vehicles using Amazon’s Alexa home wireless service. The new feature will be part of the vehicle’s connected cloud architecture.
The upgraded BMW Connected smartphone app using Alexa will be available in the U.S. this month.
Just Ask Alexa
The automaker explained that by using voice controls through Alexa, an owner can perform checks, such as vehicle battery charge and fuel levels, and use commands, like “lock doors,” through the Amazon Echo device to control their vehicles.
Another plus? The Alexa integration will send navigation directions to the car and alert drivers when it’s time to leave for a planned trip. The owner will also be notified via smartphone, making road trips simpler than fumbling with directions on the road.
To activate the feature, an owner needs to say the word, “Alexa” followed by, “BMW” into speaker-like Amazon devices that include the Echo.
BMW’s integration with Amazon leapfrogs the smartphone connectivity used by many automakers today, which already offer remote access to vehicles. While this is big news for BMW, Hyundai’s new Genesis luxury division was the first to offer access to car functions using Alexa voice commands.