BMW Group’s Digital Day, a sort of tech fair and outing held at its headquarters in Munich, gives the automaker an opportunity to showcase some of its latest developments and innovations in automotive technology.
The focus at this year’s exhibition was increased intelligent vehicle connectivity, mostly on the wireless front, and near-future introductions of upgraded digital services. For instance, the company announced that future models will soon be equipped to handle 5G mobile wireless connectivity, the next advancement for cellularbased wireless services.
This means faster and better mobile data bandwidth for increased data transfer speeds and thus, enhanced vehicle connectivity. As a result, future BMWs will feature more HD navigation maps, while enabling a direct exchange of data between similarly equipped vehicles. Engineers plan to continue investing in and developing the new technology as it becomes more readily available, with a commercial rollout planned in just a few short years.
BMW also used the opportunity to announce further investment in artificial intelligence, suggesting that we’ll see it surface more prominently in future models. The enhanced data connectivity means more complex software can be wirelessly transmitted. The company hopes to enhance its in-car convenience services and develop even better safety systems.
The company also wants to improve its vehicles’ safety utilizing new A.I.-based algorithms to enhance semiautomated driving tech and real-time road hazard and weather advisories to prevent accidents. Other algorithms are still under development for future autonomous driving technology.
The star of the exhibition, however, was BMW’s newest “Operating System 7.0,” BMW’s next-generation display and control system. It’s basically what the next-gen iDrive will feature. The update also applies to cars equipped with purely digital instrument clusters, which will benefit from a visual and software overhaul.
As newer BMW models are introduced — we presume beginning with the upcoming 8-Series revival — it’s not unreasonable to expect a completely new interface on future BMWs, thanks to the new Operating System 7.0.
Innovations on the manufacturing front were also shared. Thanks to the company’s advancements in digital processing, BMW Group says it improved production by further utilizing 3D printing, which speeds up research and development times and testing by decreasing downtime currently needed to remake parts as they get destroyed during testing.
BMW’s latest Digital Day 2018 demonstrates the company is striving to transition into more of a “tech company,” with a focus on enhanced and sustainable mobility services and solutions.