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BMW, Microsoft to bring Skype for Business to 5 Series cars

Published 14 July 2017

German-automaker BMW is working with Microsoft to bring the tech giant's video conference application Skype inside the new 5 Series vehicles.

The two companies have now come up with a way to make rides more productive by having Microsoft Skype in the next generation connected vehicles, especially in the BMW 5 Series.

Skype for Business will make Skype meetings available in car. The application will be added and operated by BMW’s iDrive system. As pilot, the services will first be available in Germany, France and the UK, followed by other markets.

With the services in place in BMW’s vehicles, drivers can be alerted about upcoming meetings, can offer to start a meeting without the need for the driver to physically dialling the phone, which should be avoided while driving.

Microsoft also plans to integrate calendars, to-do list and contacts using the car’s voice and navigation systems.

BMW Digital Products and Services senior vice president Dieter May said: “With BMW Connected we offer a wide range of digital services designed to help users with their daily mobility needs inside and outside of the car. We seek to continuously extend and enhance the customer experience with regard to all aspects of their mobility.

“The integration of productivity features in-car (like Exchange and Skype for Business) and personalized and contextual services will help customers with their day-to-day work and planning while they are on the road.”

Last year, the two companies came together for the development of a new platform, Open Mobility, which will power BMW Connected, supported by Microsoft Azure cloud. And, in the same year the two companies came together and launched a commercial offering of Office 365 communications and collaboration services through Microsoft Exchange.

This service was specially focused on those drivers who were already using Office 365 at work and wanted to extend the services to their cars.


Image: Microsoft to bring Skype for Business to BMW’s 5 Series vehicles. Photo: Courtesy of Microsoft.