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      01-26-2007, 07:18 AM   #1
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i-Drive. What about it?

If you have iDrive in your E90, I'm interested to hear why you think it is worth having - or why not. How does it add to your driving experience?
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      01-26-2007, 07:57 AM   #2
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Here's what I like...

- The navigation has obviously come in handy in many situations, even within my home city, where I was trying to get somewhere I hadn't been before.

- Phonebook and phone operations with voice commands and no hands

- Stereo function with voice commands and no hands

- List of mp3's and other info when playing mp3 CD's

- Ease of interaction with the car's computer regarding personal settings, maintenance checks, etc (the BC function of the stalk in the non-iDrive I tested wasn't intuitive to me, perhaps it would have been over time)

On a less important note...

- I prefer the look of the dash with the iDrive screen

- The "cool" factor from guests in my ride

So, now that I've answered, why do you ask?
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      01-26-2007, 08:23 AM   #3
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- The "cool" factor from guests in my ride
Isn't that enough?
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      01-26-2007, 08:25 AM   #4
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I-drive specifically or Navigation??
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      01-26-2007, 09:56 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LEDZEP View Post
If you have iDrive in your E90, I'm interested to hear why you think it is worth having - or why not. How does it add to your driving experience?
iDrive is worthwhile because of the improved access it gives you to myriad functionality in the car (setting Personal Profiles, more info on radio, satradio and esp. iPod).

On the E90, iDrive comes with satnav and the CCC. So you get the high version of the computer instead of the low version, which in addition to the obvious satnav functionality gives you hundreds of voice commands with which to control the car´s functions plus speech-to-text capability for use in placing calls.
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      01-26-2007, 10:32 AM   #6
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Thanks all. Jonathan, I was hoping that you would chime in.

I'm toying with the idea of trading in my beta E90 for a real one (mine was built in April '05). If I do decide to do that sometime early this spring, I want to add all the options that I feel I am missing now. Because the NAV/iDrive is not cheap, I'd like to feel that it has more benefit to me over time than just the initial 'gee-whiz' factor which will dissapate more quickly than the new car smell.

I have a Garmin Nuvi 660 that I can move from car to car, so it's hard to justify it for only the navigation, although having it integrated and the ability to use the voice commands would certainly be nice. Also, as much as I am an early adoptor of technology and love gadgets of any sort, I am also aware that such critters become obsolete at an accelerated rate compared to other aspects of a car. How viable might the iDrive/NAV system be in three or four... or even five years hence? We have seen BMW become more and more stingy about providing updates for software and technology to current owners, and the existance of an outdated system might actually reduce the value of a car - more so than if it didn't exist.

Most likely, if I did order a new E90 I would get the system, just because I would hate to regret not having it. I enjoy and appreciate the input and opinions of current iDrive owners... I have never actually had a chance to touch one yet.
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      01-26-2007, 11:02 AM   #7
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If I could order my E90 all over again, I would get iDrive again. No question.

IMO, it integrates very nicely into the car. I am a nav junkie . As much as I like the portable units (I have some of them, too), and as much as I dislike the BMW nav interface, I think there is a tremendous benefit to having nav built into the car.

Besides nav, iDrive makes other things easier. The display is big and crisp and at eye level, making it easier to see and do things like adjust the radio station, read the full text of warning messages, check the oil level, adjust car settings, etc.
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      01-26-2007, 11:18 AM   #8
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I-drive specifically or Navigation??
Yes!
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      01-26-2007, 11:24 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JSpira View Post
iDrive is worthwhile because of the improved access it gives you to myriad functionality in the car (setting Personal Profiles, more info on radio, satradio and esp. iPod).

On the E90, iDrive comes with satnav and the CCC. So you get the high version of the computer instead of the low version, which in addition to the obvious satnav functionality gives you hundreds of voice commands with which to control the car´s functions plus speech-to-text capability for use in placing calls.
+1

It has its limitations, as I am sure you are aware, but like JSpira said, having the improved access to a lot of car features is really nice. The one thing I dislike about the navigation is the fact that you can't enter in POI; drilling down categories is a bitch and time consuming if you don't know where Navteq put the place you want to go to.
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      01-26-2007, 04:16 PM   #10
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I agree with all the above posts. Let me start by saying that I WILL get Nav/iDrive again. I love it for all the reasons posted above but...

The only real negative (outside of the limition of not being able to enter POI names) is that it can sometimes be sluggish to respond. In other words, if I'm trying to move the "cursor" from one field to the next it's sometimes slow to respond.
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      01-26-2007, 04:24 PM   #11
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Some of you probably know I'm an iDrive hater but I would get it again in my next BMW.
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      01-26-2007, 07:29 PM   #12
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Scenario

Here is one example that I was pleasantly surprised to experience. I was on a date and I wanted to be spontaneous and take her to a restaurant that I had heard about which was about 40 min away. I had never been there before, so I used my navigation system to see if it was listed in the computer. To my delight, it was listed, and after I clicked on the restaurant, I was given the one click option (i-drive wheel) to call the establishment, as they have the phone numbers of all the businesses/restuarants stored. With the press of a button, the call was made through the bluetooth interface, and without lifting a finger I spoke to the host and made a reservation. After I hung up, the i-drive screen gave me a further option to choose it as my active destination. Voila! I'm on my way to the restaurant. All of this was done so effortlessly, as if someone were there to serve me personally.

Yes, a Garmin, Tom Tom, Magellan, etc. has powerful navigation functions, but here is just one example of the powerful integration capabilities that the i-drive has to offer.

Also, I think I impressed my date! Sounds like a pretty worthwhile option to me....
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      01-26-2007, 07:37 PM   #13
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smotpoker, that's a great example! Nice work.


Hey... is that a spoonerism? Methinks so.
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      01-26-2007, 08:01 PM   #14
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Quote:
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Thanks all. Jonathan, I was hoping that you would chime in.
Well you could always have emailed me directly too

One difference starting in 2007. Everyone knows you get four years of RTTI and four years of BMW Assist. But now the convenience package has a new feature which is really useful: the Assist center can enter POI info for you and send it to the car. I tested it when I was driving a 335i coupé for 10 days. It works nicely.

You can call them (via the CONCIERGE button) and just tell them to send the info - or if they are locating someplace for you or making a dinner reservation, they can also send it.
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      01-29-2007, 05:13 PM   #15
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Well you could always have emailed me directly too
Thanks! I try to harass only when necessary! I might need to do that though...
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      01-29-2007, 05:43 PM   #16
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While I dont have my E92 with idrive yet, I look forward to it. While the nav function is going to be nice, I mainly got it for its other functions. I like having control over the various car settings (entertainment and climate settings).

Joined with the ipod integration kit, I can hide my ipod in the car, and have greater use of it through the steering wheel controls and idrive controller.

If you are someone who enjoys gadgets, Im sure it would be a great addition to your car.
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