[Update 5/27/20] Kicking off with the release of the new BMW 5 Series, BMW adds on Android Auto compatibility as well as the existing Apple CarPlay compatibility. Other vehicles with iDrive 7.0 will also receive Android Auto functionality.
[Originally reported 12/13/19] Coming off the heels of their announcement last week that they will be ending the subscription fee for Apple CarPlay, German automaker BMW drops major news for the Android crowd.
Starting in July 2020, Android Auto will be supported in all vehicles equipped with the 7.0 version of iDrive (the company’s infotainment software) allowing users to use apps such as Google Maps, Google Assistant, and Google Play. To top it off, they will be one of few automakers that will wirelessly support Android Auto and no, they will not charge any fees for the feature. This means that only phones such as the Samsung Note and Galaxy lines, Google Pixel, and Nexus phones are currently supported as they run wireless Android Auto. Furthermore, Android 9.0 higher is required for Samsungs while Android 8.0 or higher is required for Nexus and Pixel phones.
It is also worth noting that on vehicles with BMW’s Digital Cockpit, Android Auto will be fully integrated not only on the infotainment screen, but relevant information will also be displayed on the instrument cluster screen as well as the heads-up display. Future users can get a preview of these Android Auto features for BMW at the upcoming 2020 CES show in Las Vegas before its release later on in the year.
Having previously stated Android Auto would never be allowed in a BMW this is quite the change of heart, first free Apple CarPlay and now Android Auto. This really is the season of giving.