BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant Uses the Power of the Cloud

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BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant will bring even more character to your car.

BMW uses Microsoft’s Azure cloud technology as their platform of choice, which includes their own voice assistant called Cortana.

You may remember the James Bond movie Tomorrow Never Dies where the hero controls his 7 Series via cellphone from the backstreet as he evades bad guys chasing and shooting at him while a female German voice from the car warned him about his seatbelt and that unsafe driving will void the warranty. The good news is that BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant will be quite a lot more sophisticated.

BMW premiered the technology at the TechCrunch Disrupt SF 2018 event. BMW has been using Microsoft’s Azure cloud technology as their platform of choice, which includes their own voice assistant called Cortana. BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant will be its own thing though, and focus on your car. It will learn your personal habits, control vehicle settings as well as navigation and entertainment, explain vehicle functions, and even hold a conversation with you on those long commutes.

Interestingly, like Bond’s 7 Series, BMW expects the assistant to make suggestions for things like using BMW High Beam Assist. So, expect to hear wisecrackers asking if it will also suggest using the blinkers and driving a little further away from the bumper of the car in front.

BMW says that through Artificial Intelligence and linking up with BMW’s Open Mobility Cloud, the voice assistant’s capabilities will grow over time and be available from outside the vehicle as well. BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant will be available on vehicles with iDrive 7.0 and as part of the Live Cockpit Professional service. According to TechCrunch, the first iteration will be available immediately if you buy a 3 Series in November, but for X5, Z4 and 8 Series models it will arrive in the form of an over-the-air software upgrade that will roll out in March 2019.

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Ian Wright has been a professional writer for two years and is a regular contributor to Corvette Forum, Jaguar Forum, and 6SpeedOnline, among other auto sites.

His obsession with cars started young and has left him stranded miles off-road in Land Rovers, being lost far from home in hot hatches, going sideways in rallycross cars, being propelled forward in supercars and, more sensibly, standing in fields staring at classic cars. His first job was as a mechanic and then trained as a driving instructor before going into media production.

The automotive itch never left though, and he realized writing about cars is his true calling. However, that doesn’t stop him from also hosting the Both Hand Drive podcast.

Ian can be reached at [email protected]

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