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PressClub Canada · Article.

“Hey BMW, now we’re talking!”

BMWs are about to get a personality with introduction of new sophisticated Intelligent Personal Assistant.

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 Richmond Hill, ON. The BMW Group announced today the introduction of the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant, a new proprietary in-car AI assistant that will enhance the BMW driving experience.

The always on-call technology platform is an intelligent, digital character that responds to the prompt “Hey BMW” and has the ability to serve the driver in a range of ways, from controlling vehicle settings, navigation and entertainment settings, to explaining vehicle functions and even conducting a conversation. The BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant will debut in 2019 and mark the start of a new era in which drivers will increasingly be able to operate their car and access its functions and information through voice control.

In the future, the personal assistant will be at the driver’s beck and call outside their vehicle too, whether it’s at home with the help of a smart speaker or while out and about via a smartphone. What's more, it will be compatible with other digital voice assistants in future too, thereby providing a link to other rapidly growing ecosystems.

Thanks to the link-up with BMW’s Open Mobility Cloud and the use of artificial intelligence, the personal assistant’s capabilities will be continually enhanced and grow with the user over time.  Regular updates that can be effortlessly carried out on a smartphone and in the car by means of the Remote Software Upgrade facility will keep expanding the range of functions and skills on offer.

Dieter May, Senior Vice President Digital Products BMW Group, saying, “BMW’s Intelligent Personal Assistant combines with the new BMW Operating System 7.0 to create a brand new, digital form of interaction with your BMW that redefines the whole driving experience.”

BMWs to acquire a digital character.

BMW’s Intelligent Personal Assistant learns routines and habits, and is subsequently able to apply them in the appropriate context. It helps the driver, learns their preferences and is familiar with their preferred vehicles settings. For example: seat heating preferences or frequent destinations. (“Take me home”). One unique feature compared

to other digital assistants of this type is that drivers can give the Intelligent Personal Assistant a name (for example, “Charlie” or “Joy”) to assign even more individual character and personality. Not only does it await the driver’s every command, it’s always there to assist them or even provide some casual conversation (“Hey BMW, what’s the meaning of life?”).

The BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant is familiar with the vehicle’s functions and is able to operate them as required. Saying “Hey BMW, I’m cold” will prompt the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant to adjust the temperature inside the car accordingly. Whereas the current version is already able to memorize the preferred settings ongoing improvement of the technology will enable it to learn more and more preferences and favourite settings in future. The assistant gets better and better with every command given, every question asked and every setting made. Forming the basis for all of this will be the portable, digital customer profile – the BMW ID. This profile links the car to the customer and their digital world.

Always on hand: the digital BMW expert.

The arrival of the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant means there is always a real BMW pro on board. The assistant is able to explain all sorts of different functions (“How does the High Beam Assistant work?”), provide current status information (“Is the oil level okay?”) and help answer questions (“What warning messages do I have?”). It knows the driver’s favourite settings, and can even activate a combination of them for their greater well-being. For instance, “Hey BMW, I feel tired” triggers a vitality programme that adjusts the lighting mood, music and temperature, among other things, in order to make the driver feel more awake. In future, the assistant will also be able to give fuel-saving driving tips or think ahead and warn drivers as necessary. It could also alert the driver to problems (“The tire pressure is low”), for example, remind the driver of service appointments or even arrange an appointment without further ado.

The Perfect Driving Assistant

The assistant is, in short, the ideal co-driver and comes in particularly useful during everyday driving (“Hey BMW, look for the nearest service station on our route”). To make navigation easier than ever, drivers can even allow the assistant to access their appointments calendar and contacts, where it will remind the driver when it is time to leave for an appointment, provide information on any traffic jams along the route, and locate a parking space at the journey’s destination. The assistant also makes a note of destinations that are driven to frequently.

The assistant’s integration into Microsoft Office 365 and Skype for Business enables it to join teleconferences at the driver’s request or read out emails, thereby transforming the BMW into a voice-controlled mobile office. Besides all this, the Intelligent Personal Assistant from BMW is an entertainment expert too. This means it can instantly identify the song currently playing on the radio or search the stations for the desired type of music (“Play classical music, please”).

Coming to BMW cars from March 2019

The Intelligent Personal Assistant will become available in a basic version with voice control in 23 languages and markets from March 2019. In Canada, the USA, Germany, UK, Italy, France, Spain, Switzerland, Austria, Brazil, Japan and (from May 2019) China, the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant will furthermore feature more natural voice control along with further intelligent functions such as Point of Interest Search, Weather and Music, for example.

The personal assistant will be offered for models featuring the new BMW Operating System 7.0 and as part of the Live Cockpit Professional. The scope of functions can be extended with the Connected Package Professional. The personal assistant will already be available to order with the new BMW 3 Series from November 2018 (start of production) and will be included for the first four years. In the case of the new BMW X5, Z4 and 8 Series models fitted with the BMW Operating System 7.0, the Remote Software Upgrade facility will allow customers to install the full version of BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant themselves, without having to visit their dealer, from March 2019.

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