BFM launches Malaysia’s first Apple CarPlay app

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BFM CarPlay App

It’s wholly unexpected, but what do you know? BFM is first to the gate to launch an iOS app that works with Apple CarPlay. As you know, CarPlay is Apple’s dedicated car dashboard operating system. BFM joins the likes of global online content providers like Spotify and Pandora, as well as Apple’s own native Podcasts and Music apps.

“Siri, where’s the nearest petrol station?”

With CarPlay, you can access a select group of iOS apps from your iPhone via your car’s built-in display.

You can invoke Siri Voice via the dashboard or steering controls, depending on your car make. Just as you would on your iPhone, you’ll be able to get directions, make calls, send text messages, and of course listen to audio content.

What’s special about the BFM CarPlay app is that it allows you to listen to a live stream of BFM radio shows as well as podcasts. You can also listen to your own playlist on the BFM CarPlay app.

BFM CarPlay App

This means you can catch up with BFM content literally anywhere with a data connection. No FM radio signal? Not a problem.

BFM says that while most of its listeners are listening to BFM via traditional FM car radios, the 89.9MHz FM transmission is restricted to Klang Valley.

Having its applications to the Suruhanjaya Komuniaksi dan Multimedia Malaysia (SKMM) for FM frequencies to transmit to other urban areas rejected numerous times, CarPlay was a solution to make BFM more accessible. SKMM cites lack of available frequencies for the rejection.

The BFM CarPlay bypasses FM frequency transmission restrictions, to allow for better accessibility in Malaysia, as well as globally.

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BFM CarPlay App

Listen to BFM for free

The good news is that BFM has worked with mobile telcos like U Mobile and Digi to enable BFM content consumption with no incurred data charges. This applies to all U Mobile and Digi Prepaid LiVE and Digi Broadband plan customers.

It’s currently working with Maxis to offer the same benefit to Maxis subscribers.

“We look forward, over time, to the increasing proliferation of CarPlay among car makes, models and standalone car entertainment systems in Malaysia. With greater penetration of CarPlay, more and more car drivers and passengers outside of the Klang Valley will have access to BFM’s engaging discussions with thought leaders on the economy, business and nation-building despite BFM not being available on FM radio in their area.”, remarked Malek Ali, Managing Director of BFM.

The BFM CarPlay app was developed by Snappymob – an iOS and Android app development company based in Malaysia. Snappymob has helped BFM develop iOS apps since 2016.

Speaking to Malek earlier, he revealed that BFM had heard of CarPlay being launched in Malaysia as early as October 2016. The team subsequently sent a formal application to Apple for development specs in December that year. However, it wasn’t until March 2017 that they received a response from Apple.

Upon receiving approval from Apple, they team went ahead full steam from ideation to development in one month. They had a MVP (minimum viable product) ready two weeks back, and integrated the playlist feature in time for the launch today.

Responding to my question about an Android Auto equivalent, Malek said they will be in touch with Google soon.

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What cars come with CarPlay support?

  • Honda Civic 2016/2017
  • Honda Accord 2017
  • BMW (add-on option) for 1 Series, 2 Series Coupé and Convertible, 3 Series, 4 Series, 6 Series, 7 Series, X3, X4, X5, X6, M2, M3, M4, X5M, X6M and M6
  • Mercedes Benz all models (add-on option)
  • Volkswagen Passat and Tiguan (add-on option)
  • Volvo XC90 and V90 (add-on option)
  • Chevrolet (selected models)

There are more than 200 car models that support CarPlay globally.

CarPlay can also be added with an aftermarket system. Major brands include Alpine, Clarion, Kenwood, Pioneer and Sony.

What other CarPlay apps are out there?

Here’s a list.

Apple CarPlay apps

What iPhone models work with CarPlay?

iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone SE, iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c, iPhone 5.

Learn more about Apple CarPlay here.

Download BFM CarPlay now

Download the BFM CarPlay app from www.bfm.my/apple.

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