The BMW Group has reached the latest stage of development with the BMW iDrive system. A new home screen with clearly arranged functions offers greater ease of use on the BMW Curved Display. The QuickSelect design for the system also adds a better menu structure that is inspired by consumer electronics products. By displaying the appropriate information at the appropriate time, the new BMW iDrive contributes in a special way to the delivery of a focused, secure driving experience. Throughout the course of 2023, the new BMW iDrive technology will progressively be incorporated into current models.
“Today, BMW iDrive is more than just a control and operating system – it’s a digital world of experience allowing human and car to interact with one another and exchange information,” remarks Stephan Durach, Senior Vice President BMW Group Connected Company Development. “As we said at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in January 2023, we are continuously enhancing the associated user experience based on the latest available technology.” This results in a wider selection of digital information and entertainment offerings, quicker function update cycles, greater data on electric car charging stations, and enhanced access to a variety of specialized internet services.
BMW iDrive will in the future place an even stronger emphasis on interaction utilizing the touchscreen and natural language thanks to its updated graphical user interface and improved menu layout. The multisensory BMW iDrive experience will continue to be accessed through the BMW Curved Display.
New home screen shows functions on a single level and enables rapid access.
The next-generation BMW iDrive turns the home screen on the BMW Curved Display into a permanently viewable user interface. Other individually configurable graphics can also be displayed here at all times as an alternative to the navigation system’s map view.
The new zero-layer philosophy ensures that all relevant functions and data are displayed on a single level, allowing users to choose a desired function without first entering a submenu. Instead, live widgets are displayed on the driver's side of the user interface in a vertical configuration. These function icons can be chosen with a swipe of the finger and can also be customized separately. QuickSelect functionality enables touch-based interaction with the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant to begin, as well as quick selection of entertainment programs, contact lists, and vehicle settings. And once the necessary settings have been selected, all it takes is a short press on the home icon at the bottom of the display to return to the previous screen.
BMW offers a user experience that meets the high standards of the brand while focusing on modern operating habits.
Hence, the new BMW iDrive's operational principle reflects user behaviors developed with current consumer gadgets. Functions and settings may be activated much more quickly and easily thanks to the new flat menu structure. At the same time, the system significantly enhances the BMW driving experience. The digital material is intended to improve the driver focus for which BMW is renowned, just like the hardware in the shape of the BMW Curved Display. BMW iDrive delivers the appropriate information at the appropriate time and location.
The graphical interface and menu structure use a layout created by BMW Group Design that is both consistent and representative of the brand to provide intuitive interaction while driving. Customers can therefore always have a distinctive BMW user experience.
The foundation is laid by BMW Operating Systems 8.5 and 9.
The new BMW iDrive with QuickSelect is based on the most recent generation of infotainment head units, which is also in charge of graphic processing. It is a further evolution of the BMW Operating System 8 installed in current BMW vehicles with BMW Curved Display.
All of BMW's executive, luxury, and midsize model ranges will eventually adopt the new BMW Operating System 8.5. It will continue to run on Linux and be paired with the largest BMW Curved Display model.
With the new BMW Operating System 9, which is based on the Android Open Source Project software, the digital experience on the unique BMW Curved Display of the compact-class models 2 is now being developed.
The transition from push, turn and press to swipe, tap and natural language.
When the BMW iDrive system was first launched in 2001 with the new BMW 7 Series, its main purpose was to use one display and one interactive element for as many functions as possible in order to cut down on the number of buttons, controls and displays. The BMW iDrive Controller therefore acquired the status of universal control device as we knew it from a computer mouse. Scrolling and clicking on a desktop became turning, pushing and pressing in a car – intuitively and with minimal distraction from the road ahead.
After about 20 years, the digital user experience is dominated by touchpads, touch-sensitive smartphone displays and voice assistants. Swiping, tapping and speaking are the most common methods of interaction. The BMW Curved Display’s touchscreen functionality and dialogue using natural language represent the contemporary form of interaction between human and car.