BMW becomes one of the first car manufacturers to utilise wearable tech, letting users control its i3 with a Samsung smartwatch.
If you thought only smartphones and tablets could play nice with your car, think again. BMW has been busy demonstrating an app that will allow you to control its i3 electric car from the comfort of your wrist. James Bond, eat your heart out.
The ‘Samsung Galaxy Gear with BMW i Remote App’, to quote its not-so-catchy name, lets the driver check the battery level, whether the doors, windows and sunroof are open or closed and how many miles range the i3 has left before it runs out juice – all without having to be near the car.
Samsung’s Galaxy Gear smartwatch also makes it possible to send the i3 a navigation destination and turn on the heating or air conditioning before you climb in. No more sticking to the leather or freezing to death while the engine warms up.
All functions can be operated using the Galaxy Gear’s touchscreen or by using Samsung’s voice recognition software known as S Voice. Say “BMW take me to…”, for instance, and you’re good to go.
Wannabe British spies will have to wait a little longer for remote control driving like in Tomorrow Never Dies, granted, but at least the app is a step in the right direction.
Remote functionality is not actually a new thing for BMW. The smartphone app My BMW Remote, available on iOS and Android, lets the driver communicate with and control their car using a smartphone.
BMW is yet to say whether the app will be released to the public. We hope it will be because it would make a useful addition for those lucky enough to own the pricey yet capable i3.
Wearable tech is likely to become more prominent in 2014 as car and tech companies look to offer drivers more in-car technology than ever.
BMW i3 and Samsung Galaxy Gear video