BMW Tests Customersí Patience with Subscription Service for Heated Seats

by Bimmerfest.com Member - BimmerFest Staff on July 2, 2020, 4:04 pm
Automakers love to talk about how their cars will have over-the-air updates and the consequences of that are coming to light. At a VR presentation streamed from Germany today, BMW outlined the functions that its BMW Operating System 7 will be capable of, including subscription-based features.

The automakers aims to turn a number of options into software services. Everything from safety systems like adaptive cruise control and automatic high-beams to options like heated seats. So thatís why our buttons disappeared and fled into the infotainment system.

Options will be enabled via the new My BMW app, will average 1GB in size, and will allegedly take about 20 minutes to download. I canít wait for the lag on my heated seat input to start happening after Iíve downloaded too many apps.

Details on cost and terms are still scant, but BMW representatives offered examples of terms that could last as little as three months. Presumably, the thinking is that some people may only want to pay for their heated seats, say, in the coldest three months of the year.

I can see the ad now, an attractive 20-something person gets ready for a date, throws on a coatóstops themselves. Wait, itís cold out! They take out their phone, open the My BMW app and download heated seats then rush out the door. The app downloads just in time for their passenger to have a warm seat. ďThe My BMW app. Just in time. Just for when you need it.Ē

The move takes the same approach that BMW tried when it asked customers to pay for limited-time access to wireless Apple CarPlay. The company quickly scrapped the program after it was called price gouging, but it still seems to be interested making a go of it.

The problem is that although attractive, given the lower initial price tag, systems like these are almost exclusively designed to cost you more. They almost invariably benefit the seller and disfavor the customer. There may be some people who actually save money under such a scheme, like Iím sure someone has made money at a casino, but the fact remains the system is fundamentally set up to free people of their money.



Leave a Comment

You must be a registered member to comment on stories. Please take a moment to register for your free account now. If you already have an account, log in using fields below.










11 responses to BMW Tests Customersí Patience with Subscription Service for Heated Seats

Doug Huffman commented:
July 2, 2020, 5:53 pm

I have no intention to ever buy another BMW, but rather will cherish what I have. It's better to want what you have than to have what you want. Otay, ZOOMER?
JagerPgh commented:
July 6, 2020, 11:44 pm

A nice, used Porsche 911 is starting to look better...
540dieselguy commented:
July 7, 2020, 12:28 pm

This is a terrible idea. Keep it up and BMW will lose customers.
Dr. G7 commented:
July 7, 2020, 6:13 pm

540dieselguy commented:
"A nice, used Porsche 911 is starting to look better..."

That is going from the frying pan to the fire.
Porsche owner
BlkBeauty commented:
July 8, 2020, 10:29 pm

So then every model would have the capability of heated seats, but you'd need to enable it via the subscription service, right? Isn't this better than having to buy an expensive package with things you don't want/need just to get heated seats or whatever the option is?
the_fox commented:
July 9, 2020, 5:11 pm

You are kidding yourself if you think that you're only paying for heated seats 3 months of the year. The hardware for heated seats will have to be built in every car, which means you've already paid for heated seats when you bought it. On top of that, you'll pay a subscription for the on/off button.
Dr. G7 commented:
July 9, 2020, 6:51 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by the_fox View Post
You are kidding yourself if you think that you're only paying for heated seats 3 months of the year. The hardware for heated seats will have to be built in every car, which means you've already paid for heated seats when you bought it. On top of that, you'll pay a subscription for the on/off button.
Back to what I said, $2 toggle switch and 50 cts of wiring. This not like Tesla turning on auto park or summon features.
ard commented:
July 14, 2020, 2:43 am

Why only heated seats?

They can charge for AC or heat via app. They should hire some rech whizzes from Uber who can work out a surge pricing algorithm based on the exterior temperatures.

Nothing but upside and profit for bmw, can't see any downsides eh?
CityGuide commented:
July 28, 2020, 9:34 pm

I actually checked the article's date to ensure this wasn't an April 1st rehash of some sort.
listerone commented:
August 8, 2020, 1:59 pm

I just might be willing to pay for remote start.
BenF12400 commented:
August 12, 2020, 10:01 am

Remote start is a $300 option on my 2020 X5 - and so far, has come in handy (can't comment on the price, though}.