BMW’s in-house developed intelligent app technology allows rapid in-car integration of the latest digital services and apps. One example is the research app being debuted by Nokia’s navigation subsidiary HERE at its stand at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2015 in Las Vegas. At this venue, BMW ConnectedDrive is presenting a BMW i3 equipped with cloud-based connectivity and a HERE app that synchronises digital devices such as a smartphone with the vehicle’s navigation system. Destinations entered on the smartphone using the HERE Companion App are simultaneously imported to the car, where they can be used right away by the navigation system to compute a route, or can be saved as favourites. The cloud system also allows “over-the-air” updating, for example of navigation maps. Equally impressive is the high resolution of the map display in the exhibited BMW i3. This display, which takes quality to new levels, is three-dimensional and detailed. The navigation route is perfectly integrated in the 3D view and can be quickly interpreted and understood by users. Using HERE, the BMW i3 can also share destination addresses or estimated times of arrival with contacts, via text or email.


BMW i3 with cloud-based connectivity.
Thank to the rapid proliferation of smartphones and the steady stream of new services offered by such devices, users now expect a high level of connectivity between driver, vehicle and environment. The trend towards cloud computing caters to these demands by harnessing the capacity of external servers for use by connected digital devices. The in-car network of the BMW i3 on show at CES is connected via the BMW backend with such a cloud system, allowing the vehicle to exchange data with connected devices. Amongst other things, the HERE Companion App can be used on a smartphone or home PC to provide easy route planning. Destinations can be imported directly to the car, where they are immediately available for use by the navigation system. In the same way, address data for a point of interest can be transferred from a smartphone to the BMW i3 with equal simplicity.

The research app being exhibited at CES also uses the cloud for “over-the-air” data updating. This means the BMW i3’s Nokia Here navigation maps can be updated without having to use external data storage media. As a result, the vehicle always automatically has access to the most up-to-date map data, which can be used for intelligent navigation and other tasks.

HERE embedded in navigation system.
HERE appears as a specific menu option in the BMW i3’s multimedia menu, which users can click on to share destination addresses. For example, destinations that have been saved in the navigation system as favourites can be mailed or texted to business contacts, or the estimated time of arrival for a given journey can be mailed or texted to family members or friends. These functions are further examples of the improved information quality offered by connected vehicles.

Map display provides a more immersive user experience.
The navigation map display in the BMW i3 Control Display achieves a new level of quality. In particular, it features more accurate detail, 3D rendering and a highly realistic depiction of the planned route. Buildings that could potentially block the view of the route are shown in semi-transparent form. They are still depicted in their entirety but do not interrupt the view of the route, which remains visible behind them. Users can also display features such as intersections in realistic detail so as to prepare themselves in advance for complicated driving manoeuvres.