BMW is using this year’s Consumer Electronic Show (CES) to preview its next-generation iDrive infotainment system, which will debut with the iX that is set to go on sale later this year.
On the iX, the system is linked to a 14.9-inch touchscreen and a 12.3-inch instrument display, both of which are covered by a single, curved piece of glass. The new iDrive is said to utilise the potential of a connected car in order to “make the mobility experience even safer, even more comfortable and convenient, and even richer in variety.”
Based on the photos and videos, the system sports a refreshed and more vibrant design, although it isn’t too radical so current owners won’t have to face a steep learning curve. Like the previous version of iDrive that is powered by BMW Operating System 7.0, the new one will continue to come with a personal voice assistant and gestures. Even the familiar iDrive dial makes a return, albeit redesigned, so it looks like BMW isn’t doing away with physical controls just yet.
The carmaker adds that through a combination of sensors and artificial intelligence, it is possible to have “personalised and proactive dialogues between driver and vehicle” that opens up “new horizons for your driving experience.” Drivers should therefore have a greater access to information than before, although to what degree, remains unknown for now.
“There is no user interface in the industry that can be operated as easily and safely as our new BMW iDrive,” said Frank Weber, member of the board of management at BMW AG.
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