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Too Much Advertising?

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On: Fri, Jan 24, 2014 at 5:21PM | By: Karen Cook

Too Much Advertising?

Remember when it was all the rage to have an app on your phone that would tell you which stores were having sales as you walked through the mall? Some even gave digital coupons that were good for only a very limited time. This is old news on hand-held devices, but BMW is trying out the concept in its vehicles, obviously on a much larger scale.

BMW already uses an iDrive infotainment system in its newer cars. It provides the same options as other systems such as navigation, traffic, weather, and audio. Partnering with software manufacturer SAP, BMW is hoping to add the same sort of location-based ads that have been available on smart phones for years. The iDrive would tell you about coffee shops nearby, shopping you might be interested in, and restaurants you might like—all while you are driving down the interstate. It will provide choices for programming and can learn from you what it should notify you of. It can also be turned off entirely if you aren’t the sort to go in for this kind of thing.

Discussions and planning started in spring of 2012 and the development is still not ready to be released. It’s being tested in a small pool of 7-Series cars, but there is no word of when it will be ready for mass usage.

Yeah, it’s cool, but could it be another distraction drivers don’t need? I mean Google Maps can tell me where the restaurants, hotels, and gas stations are. Do I really need to know that there’s a shop with jeans at half-price two miles up the road? Road signs and billboards have fulfilled these needs sufficiently in the past and aren’t so obtrusive. Then again, maybe I’m too old to appreciate this particular technology. If you like it, it could be yours in the near future.


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