Streaming services mean BMW drivers no longer have to rely only on local radio. They now have access to an exciting range of audio options – from international radio stations to millions of tracks on demand.
- Patrick Witte
Of course, you could just tune in to conventional radio while driving. For news headlines, traffic updates or weather, local talk radio is still the traditional option. But sadly, too often, the boring one – and prone to frequent interruptions from irritating adverts. For the weekend road trip, a ride to the beach or the daily commute to work, driving while listening to your favourite tunes is the perfect way to travel. And streaming via the internet is already the solution of choice across the world for those who are unwilling to leave music selection in the hands of a radio DJ.
Thanks to Spotify, Deezer and other streaming services, every current BMW model is equipped to give the driver access to a virtually inexhaustible music library and almost every radio station in the world. So for the music lover or audiophile on the move there is no longer any need to limit listening to local radio playlists.
Now there are more ways than ever to enjoy audio streaming in a BMW. Depending on the model, the driver can stream by connecting a smartphone to the BMW iDrive system using a USB cable or snap-in adapter – or even via Bluetooth in the new BMW 7 Series and a range of vehicles from future BMW model generations. Selected streaming services, including Deezer, Spotify, TuneIn, Napster and Stitcher, are directly integrated in the BMW iDrive system’s user interface and controlled via the BMW Apps interface. The BMW’s sound system then becomes the perfect high-fidelity audio reproduction system.
Music lovers and audiophiles need no longer limit their listening to the playlists of local radio stations.
But a far more practical approach is to register for the Online Entertainment service accessible via ConnectedDrive. Thanks to the vehicle’s built-in SIM card, the driver has permanent connectivity via the car’s ConnectedDrive system. This means audiophiles can stream audio content without using up valuable data on their smartphone. With Online Entertainment, BMW drivers have access to millions of tracks and 200 specialist radio stations. The service brings the entire world of audio into the car – in a way that is user-friendly, intuitive, available 24/7 and regularly updated.
And there is an additional benefit: streaming services can be used in Europe without incurring the usual roaming charges levied in EU countries abroad. Moreover, tracks already selected remain available in offline mode. As soon as the driver plays a track, the system automatically downloads the complete album to the vehicle’s integrated hard drive, so that tracks play smoothly and without interruption even in a tunnel, an underground garage or in areas with poor network coverage. The process is not only more intuitive, it also enhances occupant safety since it eliminates the need for drivers to throw a distracting glance at their smartphone.
Once the apps described below are downloaded to a smartphone, they can be operated worldwide via the BMW Apps interface on the iDrive System display. Additional local services are available in regions across Asia, Europe and America. Find out more about the individual services available by consulting the BMW website in your selected country.
Deezer: The French streaming service, which has a library of over 40 million tracks, can be accessed in a BMW via the Online Entertainment service or the BMW Apps interface. Deezer also has a unique feature: it automatically supplies lyrics for downloaded songs and regularly suggests live content from selected artists.
Spotify: The service from Sweden, already the global leader among streaming services, is now available to BMW drivers. Over 60 million users choose from more than 30 million tracks and audio books on a daily basis – with over 20,000 new ones being added every day. From the superstars of pop to little-known indie bands, Spotify leaves practically no stone unturned. And thanks to its integration into the BMW Apps interface, Spotify is very user-friendly.
Stitcher: This radio on-demand service offers over 40,000 popular radio shows and is available through the BMW Apps interface. Choose from news, sports, talk, entertainment and lots more from providers such as CNN, Fox and the BBC. Talk radio content can be customised by “stitching” together favourite shows and podcasts to create individual playlists. To make things even more user-friendly, the program automatically suggests radio shows and podcasts based on individual preferences.
TuneIn: If Stitcher isn’t your thing, try TuneIn. The online service from Palo Alto, California, is available via the BMW Apps interface on the iDrive System, and streams internet radio and podcasts. Its 50 million users can choose from 100,000 radio shows and more than four million podcasts.
Audible: This platform has the world’s largest collection of audiobooks for download. Whether purchased as single audiobooks or through subscription membership, Audible additionally offers exclusive productions from bestselling authors including Richard Morgan and Stephen King. It is operated via the BMW Apps interface.
The ultimate streaming service from BMW:
Online Entertainment: This provides seamless access to the services of streaming partners Deezer and Napster, with millions of tracks and 200 specialist radio channels providing endless musical enjoyment. Online Entertainment has a major advantage: there are no roaming charges. Thanks to the built-in SIM card, it uses none of your smartphone’s data allowance. And by downloading tracks to the vehicle’s built-in hard drive, perfect sound reproduction is guaranteed.
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