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by Tim Beissmann

BMW and Mini owners will soon be able to operate a GoPro camera through their car’s infotainment system.

The integration technology – available from July in 2012 model year and newer vehicles – is the result of a new partnership between the German car maker and the American portable camera manufacturer.

GoPro integration works through the BMW Apps and Mini Connected systems fitted to select model, and requires drivers to also have a Wi-Fi-equipped GoPro camera (Hero 3+ and later) and the GoPro app installed on a connected iPhone 4 or later.

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Through the iDrive controller and the vehicle’s central screen, drivers can aim the camera, choose between six pre-set camera modes (leisure drive facing out, night driving, sport drive facing out, drive camera facing in, winding road time lapse, and straight road time lapse), and record and pause.

The app also displays elapsed recording time, Wi-Fi signal strength, and battery life, and allows drivers to put the camera to sleep between shots.

BMW claims the integration technology is “designed specifically to reduce driver distraction”.

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The technology won’t be available in Australia immediately, however, as it’s first required to meet market-specific rules related to safety and driver distraction.

BMW Australia corporate communications general manager Lenore Fletcher said the local division was currently working on homologating the GoPro app and getting design approval for our market.

Fletcher said the brand was hopeful of earning approval in the near future, telling CarAdvice that GoPro integration was a feature it would love to offer in BMW and Mini vehicles.

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BMW Group AppCenter USA boss Phil Johnston described the GoPro partnership as a natural fit for BMW and its drivers.

“The power and flexibility of the BMW Group app integration platform coupled with GoPro’s advanced camera technology brings new, safe, and engaging experiences to the enthusiasts that were previously not possible,” Johnston said.

GoPro director of strategic product opportunities Adam Silver said the collaboration set a new standard in the category and described it as “an important first step in a partnership designed to deliver next-level integration between camera and car”.




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