On Thursday, Microsoft announced that BMW was a customer of its cloud computing business. For years, BMW has been a marquee customer of Amazon Web Services and the move over to the servers of Seattle-based giant has made the headlines in the tech community.

On the same day,  Thom Brenner, BMW Group vice president of digital life, stepped on stage at Microsoft’s Build developer conference to launch BMW Connected, a mobile app that does much of its work on Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform. The app uses Microsoft’s database and machine learning services to keep tabs on traffic conditions, update travel times, inform friends and family of a driver’s likely arrival time, and more.

BMW Connected-The personalised digital assistant-11

“Azure provides the tool set to build this architecture and allowed us to scale it to our needs,” Mr. Brenner said.

The BMW Connected app links to Microsoft’s Outlook calendar software to help determine where a driver is going and uses Azure’s data analytics resources to suggest the quickest route. It offers walking directions from a parking spot to the final destination.

[Source: WSJ]