German luxury car giant BMW will be integrating the Android Automotive system into various models for the first time from next year.
BMW has announced that it will be adding the Android Automotive operating system – not to be confused with Android Auto – to specific models from 2023.
The platform – which powers infotainment systems in various Volvo, Polestar, and Stellantis group vehicles – will be incorporated alongside the current BMW Operating System 8, however it’s unclear exactly which models will gain the system.
The German car maker is yet to release images of the Android version of its iDrive 8 system, so it’s unclear if it will look any different from the existing Linux-based software.
Android Automotive is not to be confused with Android Auto; whereas the latter (Auto) is one app within the infotainment system, and requires a phone connected, the former (Automotive) drives the entire infotainment system, with no phone required.
“We are integrating the best aspects of all worlds – that could be our own in-house developments, Open Source or commercial software products, depending on what the specific solution looks like,” said BMW Group lead developer for digital driving experience, Stephan Durach.
It’s possible that the system will feature Google Maps and Google Assistant, along with the ability to utilise third-party apps. The automaker stated that the “customization enables implementers to differentiate the product as they see fit.”
Various brands have already adopted Android Automotive, including GM, Polestar, Volvo and Renault, with the Polestar 2 leading the charge.