• BMW expanding ConnectedDrive with web browsing, Siri, S Voice and Android support

    Jon Fingas
    Jon Fingas

    BMW has been refining its ConnectedDrive services for months, but that was apparently only a prelude to greater things: the automaker just outlined a roadmap for 2013 and beyond. The company is rolling out iDrive 4.2 firmware for the 2014 model year that supports web browsing while stopped, iAP Bluetooth control through iOS devices and integration with both Siri Eyes Free and S Voice. The new revision also brings voice search for locations through Google, and a ConnectedDrive Store lets drivers buy services without leaving the car. There's more to come in the long run. BMW will add support for Android apps later this year, for a start. It also wants cellular services to be commonplace. Many of its cars will have built-in SIM cards from July onward, and the company expects that cellular access will eventually be standard or near-standard worldwide -- certainly in i-series cars, where it's needed for remote control. About the only catch to the strategy is the current lack of upgrade plans for those with older vehicles. If you're using a 2013 BMW or earlier, you may have to settle for owning the Penultimate Driving Machine.