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by James Ward

The gap between our digital and physical lives is ever closing, and BMW has taken a further step forward to help combine cars and smartphones with their new Connected Personal Mobility Companion app.

Using your address book and calendar data, the BMW app knows when and where you have your next appointment.

This information is combined with real-time traffic and travel time analysis that powers the BMW Connected Drive software in your car, and the app will alert you when to leave in order to arrive on time.

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Your car’s navigation system will automatically update with the destination and any route alterations or diversions needed to avoid traffic delays.

The more you use the app, the more it understands your travel and movement habits, and it will list destinations in order of relevance for that time of day.

If you are going to be running late, the system can send a pre-formatted text message to other contacts on the meeting invite list, to advise of your estimated arrival time.

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Released at this week’s Microsoft Developer conference in San Francisco, the new BMW Connected app is part of the Open Mobility Cloud software infrastructure developed by BMW and Microsoft.

None of this functionality is groundbreaking in isolation (Google and Apple offer similar stand-alone features), but the synchronisation between your smartphone handset and car is a big step toward seamless, connected integration.

The Personal Mobility Companion app is currently only available on iOS and in North America. Android handsets and other markets, like Australia, are due to follow though.




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