It is 20 years since BMW introduced its iDrive user interface, with the system first appearing on the 7 Series in 2001. The company has now launched its latest generation, which will be fitted in the upcoming iX models. Though iDrive was initially met with mixed reviews, not least surrounding the voice recognition functions, over time it has matured, and many other manufacturers have followed BMW’s lead in utilizing a single, multifunction rotating control for many interior operations.
According to the manufacturer, the new system extends its capabilities while also being better integrated with the overall user experience, while complimenting the overall design language of the interior. “We wanted to really push the limits and set a new benchmark for a graphical user interface, artful, unexpected but pixel perfect at the same time,” said Gernot Schmierer, head of BMW Group user experience design.
Through a combination of sensor technology and AI, BMW claims that interaction with the system is now more intuitive, allowing for the presentation of an array of information to the driver such as hazard alerts, while also operating more like a personal assistant in terms of providing reminders and other services.