BMW does about-face, drops CarPlay annual subscription requirement

Enlarge / A BMW X7 navigating an off-road course (credit: Eric Bangeman)

When you buy a new car, you own it. Make the payments, and the car is 100 percent yours, with the only standing relationship between you and the carmaker consisting of scheduled maintenance. BMW broke that model when it decided to sell a software subscription along with its new cars, forcing buyers to pay $80 per year for continued access to CarPlay in cars that support Apple’s in-car infotainment interface.

As first reported by Autocar, the German automaker has decided to get rid of the subscription fee and make CarPlay standard across most of its lineup. In addition, BMW will offer support for Android Auto, in a first for the company.

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