Thursday September 29, 2022

New BMWs will require a software update in order to receive Wi-Fi, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.

According to Automotive News Europe (via 9to5Google), BMW temporarily ships new vehicles without support Android Auto, Apple CarPlay and Wi-Fi after switching chip suppliers. To make Android Auto and CarPlay available through the Android / Apple interface, the chips from the new supplier must be updated with software. In an email statement to The Verge, Phil Dilanni, a spokesperson for BMW, stated that the chips in these cars built in the first four months this year require updated software to make them fully functional and offer Apple CarPlay/Android Auto as well as Wi-Fi capability. “We have been delivering these cars to customers with the information that Apple/Android/Wi-Fi will be available via an update by the end of June, rather than delaying production / handover until the software update was complete.”
These functionalities may not be available to drivers for too long. Dilanni stated to The Verge that BMW will begin rolling out an “over-the-air” update to make these features available “in coming weeks.”
BMW did not specify which models or how many are affected, but said that vehicles with “6P1”, in their production code, won’t be able to use Android Auto, Apple CarPlay or Wi-Fi. It is unclear if the issue affects only certain regions. Automotive News Europe reports that drivers from the US and other European countries have reported receiving their new vehicles with no functionality.
This isn’t the first time BMW has made sacrifices due to the chip shortage. BMW announced last November that it would no longer ship certain new vehicles without touchscreens or a backup assistant feature. In return, it gave $500 credit to the affected drivers.
General Motors was also affected by the shortage. GM dropped wireless charging for a range of vehicles and axed a fuel management system from some trucks. The 2022 Cadillac Escalade also lost the driverless Super Cruise feature. Ford began temporarily shipping and selling Explorer SUVs with no rear heating or air conditioning controls in recent years.
Pat Gelsinger, Intel CEO, predicts that the chip shortage will continue into 2024. It affects a variety of industries in different ways.
Update May 9, 2009, 9:06 AM ET: Updated with a statement by BMW and clarification about the missing functionality.
Update May 9, 2009, 9:46 AM ET: This update emphasizes that Wi-Fi is also missing in the affected vehicles.

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