The 2015 CES was just as much a car show as it was a consumers electronics event. A number of manufacturers showcased interesting concepts around future mobility, autonomous driving and connected cars. Some of the cool stuff shown at CES could be implemented effectively in production vehicles in the immediate future.
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An impressive and unprecedented number of new technologies has also been previewed by BMW and we picked five innovations that we think will come in the near future to BMWs near you.
1. BMW M4 Concept Iconic Lights
The next step in the evolution of cars is light technology. Laser lights are now offered for the new BMW i8 and coming this fall, the new 7 Series will also offer them to customers. The laser lights offer an impressive long beam range of up to 600 meters in combination with the BMW Selective Beam function (anti-dazzle High-Beam Assistant). At CES, BMW unveiled the integration of laser lights with assistance systems and vehicle sensors to enhance safety and comfort. For example, the laser lights can work with the navigation system to illuminate corners well in advance, while a laser-based Dynamic Light Spot can provide early warning of people or animals at night from a distance of up to 100 meters.
With Audi working on similar tech, we should be seeing BMW’s laser lights in more cars in 2016. OLED was another lights technology unveiled at CES and BMW has already announced that a new M product will feature the innovative tech next year. The OLED technology makes it possible to create a new, more three-dimensional and at the same time very sharply defined appearance of lights.
2. BMW Key Fob With A Display
Not only car technology is changing, but also the ways we control the cars and their functions. The key fob is the next piece of technology up for disruption. For years, key fobs were simply used to lock or unlock your vehicle. With the introduction of electric and hybrid vehicles, there was a need for a new car key that can display essential information about your car and also to control its behavior. At the 2015 CES, BMW previewed a new high-tech keyfob which will be offered to the i8 and new 7 Series customers. Besides all the convenience functions of a remote key – unlocking, locking and failsafe identification of the key for starting the vehicle – this premium key fob also shows vehicle status displays on a 2.2-inch LCD screen. The display provides information on the fuel level, for instance, or the battery electric range. Swiping the touchscreen with the same gestures used to control a smartphone opens up submenus, which show whether the doors and windows are locked or a service is due, for example.
And you will even be able to self-park your car in the future from the keyfob.
3. A BMW Credit Card That Also Functions As A Key For The Vehicle
BMW and MasterCard have jointly presented a contactless MasterCard credit card that can be used to hire, unlock and operate a BMW or MINI vehicle from the DriveNow car sharing fleet. Beside the cool factor, the amount of space saved in your pocket and potential value is simply impressive. In the future, this particular piece of plastic with NFC technology could open up your house, handle your payments and money withdrawals, logging in to online services, and finally to unlock and power up your vehicle. One card to rule it all!
4. Completely Free, Over-The-Air, Vehicle Map Updates
Updating your BMW navigation maps will be easier than ever. At CES BMW has announced the OTA map updates which will save you trips to your local dealership. With the help of the vehicle’s built-in SIM card, the data is transmitted over the air via the mobile phone network, with no licensing fees or transmission costs for the end user. Other OTA updates to your BMW could also arrive in the future.
5. BMW ConnectedDrive Store
At BMW, connectivity between driver, vehicle and environment is about to get even simpler, even more personalized and even more flexible. The extensive range of digital services and features available under the umbrella of BMW ConnectedDrive can be booked and updated via the Internet on your home computer or directly from the car – thanks to the BMW ConnectedDrive Store.
The services are ready to use in the car in a matter of minutes. Following the successful launch of the BMW ConnectedDrive Store in Belgium and Luxembourg in early summer and in Germany in October of last year, it will also be available in the USA from spring 2015. With the maps being updated regularly and traffic information relayed through the navigational system regularly, this could prove to be a great asset to frequent travelers who require up to date information on the trip they are taking.