BMW iDrive

Buyers will need a software update for the smartphone services.

Thanks to the ongoing computer chip shortages, BMW had to change chip suppliers for some of its infotainment services. The new chips are compatible with Apple and Google’s smartphone offerings, but will require an over-the-air software update to get them working properly. BMW plans to have that update pushed out to the waiting automobiles in June.

BMW had to choose to either stall production and delivery, or “de-content” the system of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto to get new cars on the road. Models affected often bear the code “6pi” and are being distributed in Europe and the U.S.

The new chips are apparently also lacking wi-fi capabilities. That means buyers will need to temporarily opt for using Bluetooth connection or perhaps resort to an actual USB cable connection to their smartphones.

The chip shortage continues to force car makers to choose to either “de-content” some features to keep new cars reaching customers. Some manufacturers have had to leave out a head unit, skip heated seats, or cut navigation features from some models. At least BMW buyers should only face this . . . hardship . . . temporarily.




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