The plan, according to a statement from the German automaker, is to have smartphones act as controllers, while games are displayed on the vehicle’s center screen. The project is supposed to get off the ground sometime next year. Like most things with new vehicles these days, the games will be delivered to vehicle screens over-the air.
The move is being done in an effort to make waiting for your BMW to charge a little less of a boring proposition.
“With AirConsole we will leverage innovative technologies combined with a broad variety of fun and multiplayer games,” Stephen Durach, a senior VP of BMW Connected Company Development, said. “This will make every waiting situation inside the vehicle, such as charging, an enjoyable moment”
BMW says it’ll be a very easy process to set up your AirConsole “gaming experience.” The company says all you’ll need is a smartphone (to act as the controller) and the BMW Curved Display… which is attached to your very expensive electric vehicle. To establish a connection between your phone and the display, all you need to do is scan a QR code displayed on the infotainment system. Do that, and boom you’re in.
This isn’t an automaker’s first foray into in-car gaming. The most notable is probably Tesla. Those cars come preloaded with a handful of games that make killing time at an EV charger a little more bearable. However, unlike BMW’s use of your smartphone as a controller, Tesla utilizes the controls from your actual steering wheel – including turning the physical wheel itself. It doesn’t look like BMW’s partnership with AirConsole will support such a thing.
Anyway, it’s interesting to see what automakers are doing in order to make it easier for people to just sit around as their vehicles charge.