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BMW to launch ConnectedDrive in-car internet service at Geneva show

by Drew Johnson

BMW has announced that it will launch its new ConnectedDrive technology at next month's Geneva Motor Show. ConnectedDrive will allow BMW owners to access the entire internet via the car's iDrive and center mounted LCD screen. Initially, ConnectedDrive will only be available in Europe.

The ConnectedDrive service will be provided by EDGE technology (Enhanced Data Rates for GSM Evolution), which is the same service that Apple uses to connect its iPhone to the internet. Transfer speeds are said to be just slower than 3G -- which is the speed of most wireless cards.

For safety reasons, ConnectedDrive will only be accessible at speeds slower than 5km/hr. However, vehicles equipped with BMW rear-seat DVD player will allow rear-seat passengers to use the internet at any speed.

Although the technology will not initially be offered in BMW's U.S. vehicles, the option should make it to our shores in the coming years.