BMW to make software standard on most models for the lifetime of the car, rather than charge customers after the first 12 months
4 December 2019

BMW is set to announce today that it has reversed its controversial decision to charge Apple CarPlay users £85 per year.

Launched in 2018 with the brand’s latest ‘7.0’ operating system, customers received a year's free subscription to the service, which lets users synchronise their iPhone with the car’s infotainment system. After 12 months, owners were asked if they wanted to let the subscription lapse or pay £85 for another year’s access.

Now, a BMW spokesperson claims, the system will be free for the lifetime of the car on all models operating the latest infotainment system. Models that aren’t, such as the i3, i8 and runout examples of the 2 Series and 4 Series, will need to pay £235 for a lifetime subscription.

Customers who've already paid for a year’s or three year's subscription in models now not affected will be offered free unlimited subscription instead, it's claimed.

Apple claims it doesn't charge car manufacturers a fee to use CarPlay, but costs are incurred in integrating it with the car’s screen. Most manufacturers factor this into the list or lease price of the model, but BMW was the first to decide to pass that cost onto the customer and give them a choice.

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Comments
15

4 December 2019

Wonder what the take up was on this vital piece of bling

4 December 2019

More to the point who in the first place thought it a good idea in the first place I ask ? ?. No doubt a highly paid excutive ,so not very bright really .

4 December 2019
Antony Riley wrote:

More to the point who in the first place thought it a good idea in the first place I ask ? ?. No doubt a highly paid excutive ,so not very bright really .

Its not BMW's fault - Apple, an evil company who makes overpriced, sh*te products that idiots who should know better stupidly buy, charges BMW an expensive subscription. Why should BMW pay it just cos some moron decides they have to have a ridiculously overpriced Crapple product when far better and far cheaper Android prioducts are available ? It just drives up the cost for everyone else. No, if you have to subscribe to Crapple's overpriced, not very good walled garden YOU should pay, not someone else.

4 December 2019

Seriously? Did you read the story? Apple doesn't charge BMW a thing. BMW was the only mfr who tried to charge users a fee for something they get free. That's why owners were upset.

4 December 2019
ChKen wrote:

Seriously? Did you read the story? Apple doesn't charge BMW a thing.

 

That was the bit that really got me!   I thought it was a charge by Apple that BMW were passing on, but no, it was just BMW being greedy.

 

One thing I never understood is how much all the manufacturers charge for updating the maps.   Something that could be done for a very low cost, even offered for free with a service, but, no, they want to charge.   BMW wanted something like £180 for a CD for the one I had.   At that price I could buy a new satnav every year instead!

 

4 December 2019

I recently bought an SUV. One car on my shortlist was an X1 which was within my price range and the car I thought I was going to end up with. It passed all my needs for a car bar one. Now I'm not asking for voice control and any fancy trickery, all I want to do is either read my texts on screen or preferably, have them read to me. I have an Android phone and all other cars on my shortlist were able to do that bar one - the BMW. Given the BMW was the most expensive car on the list, had the best looking infotainment screen and was super easy to navigate, the fact it can't do the same thing a mid range Renault Clio can is just crazy.

Haven't been a BMW customer for many years and I don't see that changing unless someone within the company gets their act together. I ended up buying another VAG product.

4 December 2019
scotty5 wrote:

I recently bought an SUV. One car on my shortlist was an X1 which was within my price range and the car I thought I was going to end up with. It passed all my needs for a car bar one. Now I'm not asking for voice control and any fancy trickery, all I want to do is either read my texts on screen or preferably, have them read to me. I have an Android phone and all other cars on my shortlist were able to do that bar one - the BMW. Given the BMW was the most expensive car on the list, had the best looking infotainment screen and was super easy to navigate, the fact it can't do the same thing a mid range Renault Clio can is just crazy.

Haven't been a BMW customer for many years and I don't see that changing unless someone within the company gets their act together. I ended up buying another VAG product.

No excuse here, BMW - why the hell isnt Android Auto standard ? Seems theyre totally biased against Android by not supporting Android Auto at all ! What the hell is going on here ? Android is the most poular operating system in the world.

4 December 2019

For BMW to charge for this whilst other manufacturers offer it for free was a real boob, they must have lost sales and that's why they have changed their minds. I think to charge existing customers £235 is an insult though, they should just own up say they made a commercial mistake and offer it for tree IMO

5 December 2019
The Dr wrote:

For BMW to charge for this whilst other manufacturers offer it for free was a real boob, they must have lost sales and that's why they have changed their minds. I think to charge existing customers £235 is an insult though, they should just own up say they made a commercial mistake and offer it for tree IMO

Not all manuafacturers offer it for free, Volvo charge £300

5 December 2019

on some volvo's it's a £300 option, on others it's standard. If you take up the option, that's all you ever pay.

In my case (Android Auto), once you have it, that's all you ever really use for maps and audio and the beauty of being able to say "hey google what's my eta" or "hey google ring my wife" is worth it by far.

I don't know if apple is the same, but with Google all the updating is done at the phone end so you get improvements along the way effortlessly.

Having said all of that, I deffo wouldn't pay yearly for it. Good try BMW but that wasn't ever going to fly!

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