The auto firm will not let Google take over its infotainment system
BMW’s reluctance to affix Google’s ecosystem resulted in 2020, when it lastly added assist for Android Auto to a few of its automobiles after counting on Apple’s CarPlay for a few years. It even added assist for wi-fi connections, making BMW one of many few auto corporations to let drivers use Google’s dashboard with out having to plug in. The automaker took issues a step additional final yr when it confirmed that it could undertake Android Automotive, a model of Android designed to energy vehicles from the bottom up. At CES 2023, BMW shared extra particulars about its plan to bake the platform into its infotainment system.
In line with Digital Developments, BMW plans to deliver Android Automotive to its future automobiles beginning in 2024 with the OS 9 replace. This platform would be the firm’s first step towards a completely Android-based infotainment system, a major departure from the corporate’s long-standing reliance on Linux, which has served as the inspiration of its iDrive expertise. When OS 9 is launched subsequent yr, BMW intends to take a extra open-source strategy.
This implies the corporate doesn’t intend to make use of Google Automotive Companies (or GAS) — assume Google apps for vehicles — for its Android-based infotainment system. It’s going to as a substitute welcome third-party apps into the fold. The objective is to deal with software program growth in-house and create a extra fluid interface freed from Google’s grasp, which is just potential with Automotive.
For end-users, this implies dropping entry to the Google Play Retailer on their automotive show. Relatively than faucet Google for assistance on implementing the system, BMW will use third-party app shops akin to Aptoid for its platform, successfully stopping the search big from taking on your dashboard. In the event you’d like to stay with Google’s personal app market, different automotive manufacturers that depend on Google Automotive Companies akin to Ford, GM, and Volvo could also be up your alley.
Regardless of being the final carmaker to assist Android Auto, BMW is amongst an early wave of automakers to again Automotive. That mentioned, the corporate’s present automotive fashions that ship with iDrive 8 will persist with Linux. Sooner or later, these automobiles can be up to date to iDrive 8.5, which is able to provide an Android expertise sans the full-on capabilities obtainable on Automotive.