BMW has made controversial decision to charge an annual fee for the use of Apple’s CarPlay in its vehicles.
Since 2016, the German automaker has required owners to pay extra to use CarPlay — first as a one-time $300 option and then later as an $80-a-year fee.
The change will apply to both US-based and UK-based customers. Anyone who owns 2019 or 2020 model year vehicles and current BMW-Apple CarPlay subscribers will shortly no longer have to pay for a monthly or annual subscription. However, this process may take several weeks to complete for existing accounts.
According to BMW, the company is trying to satisfy our its customers’ needs and this policy change is intended to provide them with a better ownership experience.
BMW will now offer CarPlay for free to only those customers with vehicles operating the automaker’s latest infotainment system, ConnectedDrive.
Apple says it doesn’t charge automakers a fee to use CarPlay, but there are costs incurred in integrating it with the car infotainment system.
The vast majority of automakers offer CarPlay as a free system. The latest version of CarPlay that came with the iOS 13 update to be the best version of the in-car interface yet.
Car companies have tried to keep Apple and Google at arm’s length for years, believing they could build in-car technology that rivaled the mobile industry for its usability and functionality. Now, they’re seeing carmakers basically throw in the towel and admit that their customers prefer their phone’s interface to their car’s.
© Times of U