While recent reports have detailed talks between Apple and BMW related to Apple’s behind-the-scenes electric car project, BMW has long been one of the last major holdouts to bring Apple’s current in-dash CarPlay platform to its vehicles. That looks like it will change later this year when at least two models will get support for CarPlay.
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The news comes from a price list for the new BMW X5 M and BMW X6 M models that was spotted on BMW’s German site and shared in a forum thread at bimmerpost.com. The price list is set to take effect on August 1st, and within BMW confirms CarPlay support will be enabled sometime in the second half of the year, indicating that support for the feature could come through a later update.
The option is listed alongside new tech options for the BMW X5 and X6 M models including a large 10.25” touchscreen LCD like BMW already includes in its 7 Series models (pictured above).
A Google translation of the BMW price list text above appears to mention wireless capabilities as well, something that we’ve previously heard is coming from other manufacturers. Currently CarPlay still requires a wired connection to an iPhone in most vehicles, but the protocol supports wireless connectivity since iOS 9. The translation reads, “…wireless and convenient use of the iPhone in your vehicle via Apple carplay… *Expected to be available in the 2nd half 2016.” It’s unclear, however, if the word wireless is simply getting lost in translation here and could refer to Bluetooth.
Several reports over the last year claimed that Apple had been in various negotiations with BMW, as well as Daimler and others, regarding its secretive electric vehicle project. The latest report claimed talks with BMW have since fallen apart, reportedly over disagreements on how data collection obtained from the vehicle would be handled. A separate report around the same time said Apple could use Magna for the project, an Austria-based vehicle manufacturer that BMW itself has contracted.
Apple earlier this year published an official list of CarPlay partners listing car manufacturers as well as supported vehicles by year and model on its website. BMW is yet to be added to the list, although the automaker is on Apple’s list of committed partners without specifying models.