BMW’s next-generation voice assistant will be built on Amazon's Alexa technology, according to executives who spoke at Amazon’s annual Devices and Services launch event.
The Alexa technology will allow a more natural dialogue between driver and vehicle, so drivers can stay focused on the road, according to Stephan Durach, senior vice-president connected company and development technical operations, BMW Group,
Since the introduction of the first BMW voice assistant in 2018, voice interaction has become an increasingly important part of BMW iDrive.
The new BMW voice assistant will work in cooperation with Alexa, providing customers the benefits of an intelligent assistant that is the vehicle and services expert, while Alexa provides familiar functions such as the ability to control music, remotely manage their smart home, add items to a shopping list or check the weather for the day.
Customers can still choose to use either the BMW voice assistant and Alexa individually, or have both assistants work alongside each other.
“This cooperation with BMW is a great example of what Alexa Custom Assistant was designed for — to make it faster and easier for companies to develop custom intelligent assistants for virtually any device, without the cost and complexity of building from the ground up,” says Dave Limp, senior vice president of devices and services, Amazon, in a release.
The first vehicles with the new generation of BMW’s voice assistant will launch within the next two years.
BMW says it will ensure that customer data is protected and processed in accordance with data privacy requirements. Both the automaker and Amazon share the commitment to maintaining customers’ trust and protecting their privacy, including giving them control over their data, per BMW.