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      12-28-2014, 11:23 AM   #1
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BMW reported to change i3's Onboard Charger. Wants to bring back 7.4 kW charge rate

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BMW reported to change i3's Onboard Charger. Wants to bring back 7.4 kW charge rate
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Service Action – B61 31 14 KLE Update

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In its original configuration, the i3 had goal set for a charge rate over 7.0 kW. Unfortunately, owners reported problems with the KLE (onboard charger) with ultimate charger failure. To rectify the situation, BMW issued a software update to limit the charging rate to 4-5.5kW.

Now, BMW has issued a service action (referenced above) to replace the onboard chargers which will bring the charging rate back up to the original intended rate of ~7 kW.

If you own an i3, now might be a good time to contact your dealer and make them aware of the above Service Action and get the replacement done free of charge along with the required software update

Source: InsideEVs

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      12-28-2014, 03:08 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark
Service Action – B61 31 14 KLE Update

Attachment 1136026
In its original configuration, the i3 had goal set for a charge rate over 7.0 kW. Unfortunately, owners reported problems with the KLE (onboard charger) with ultimate charger failure. To rectify the situation, BMW issued a software update to limit the charging rate to 4-5.5kW.

Now, BMW has issued a service action (referenced above) to replace the onboard chargers which will bring the charging rate back up to the original intended rate of ~7 kW.

If you own an i3, now might be a good time to contact your dealer and make them aware of the above Service Action and get the replacement done free of charge along with the required software update

Source: InsideEVs
Bummer.

One thing cool about a Tesla is they have the ability to send updates without the car being present.

This is more of a recall on a bad part. Weird that they did not no this before they rolled out production, considering all the R&D.
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      12-28-2014, 03:15 PM   #3
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all in all, At least BMW Is getting infront of the problem.
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      12-28-2014, 03:30 PM   #4
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all in all, At least BMW Is getting infront of the problem.
+1
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      12-28-2014, 03:47 PM   #5
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This stuff is so hi tech.
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      12-28-2014, 03:59 PM   #6
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      12-28-2014, 04:19 PM   #7
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Limited production prototypes will not always show the same results as a large-scale production piece. A part failed, only when hot, and then, not all of them did, so it is quite possible, that never came up during the R&D. THen again, it could have been a process change with the switch to large scale production, or the circuit board was laid out differently but with the same parts, and one trace ended up a bit too small or too long, or too close together, and it failed when hot.

IOW, not everything shows up in R&D or prototype stages. The important part is that they are fixing it to restore advertised capabilities.

While BMW could do s/w updates OTA, there's the potential of causing someone's vehicle to be non-operational when they really needed it even if you tried to execute it in the middle of the night. SOme things, once started, can't be stopped, and you are at risk until it finishes. THen, what if for some reason, there's a glitch and you wake up the next morning, get in your car and it fails to function?! Much safer and more control when done at the dealer's. Or, you decide to leave early, or are out late, and then find your car in the middle of a software update and you're stuck until it is finished?

BMW will let you update some non-critical items yourself, and those again could be done OTA, but some people would be really annoyed if they had everything optimized where they want only to find out the next time they got in the car, the screen was different, the menus had been update, and they can't find what they are looking for because it moved, or maybe even eliminated or combined with something else.

IMHO, I don't find Tesla's OTA updates a big bonus other than the fact that since they do NOT have dealers, and few service centers, it is probably the only way the could reasonably do it...I look at it as an initial design requirement and limitation, not necessarily a benefit.

All modern BMW's are essentially computer driven, and could be optimized for OTA updates, but it would take a huge new effort. I'm sure a good portion of the i3 logic was cloned, and there are a fair amount of common modules with other BMWs...starting over from scratch would be daunting.
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      12-28-2014, 04:28 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jadnashuanh
Limited production prototypes will not always show the same results as a large-scale production piece. A part failed, only when hot, and then, not all of them did, so it is quite possible, that never came up during the R&D. THen again, it could have been a process change with the switch to large scale production, or the circuit board was laid out differently but with the same parts, and one trace ended up a bit too small or too long, or too close together, and it failed when hot.

IOW, not everything shows up in R&D or prototype stages. The important part is that they are fixing it to restore advertised capabilities.

While BMW could do s/w updates OTA, there's the potential of causing someone's vehicle to be non-operational when they really needed it even if you tried to execute it in the middle of the night. SOme things, once started, can't be stopped, and you are at risk until it finishes. THen, what if for some reason, there's a glitch and you wake up the next morning, get in your car and it fails to function?! Much safer and more control when done at the dealer's. Or, you decide to leave early, or are out late, and then find your car in the middle of a software update and you're stuck until it is finished?

BMW will let you update some non-critical items yourself, and those again could be done OTA, but some people would be really annoyed if they had everything optimized where they want only to find out the next time they got in the car, the screen was different, the menus had been update, and they can't find what they are looking for because it moved, or maybe even eliminated or combined with something else.

IMHO, I don't find Tesla's OTA updates a big bonus other than the fact that since they do NOT have dealers, and few service centers, it is probably the only way the could reasonably do it...I look at it as an initial design requirement and limitation, not necessarily a benefit.

All modern BMW's are essentially computer driven, and could be optimized for OTA updates, but it would take a huge new effort. I'm sure a good portion of the i3 logic was cloned, and there are a fair amount of common modules with other BMWs...starting over from scratch would be daunting.
I disagree, with all respect.

Bank switched firmware/software updates are well understood in the art. A failure to boot or come online can cause instant reversion to the alternate (previous) bank.

It is precisely the fact that firmware can be updated that has led to mediocrity in engineering. In the old days, firmware was truly "firm" and updates were astronomical; thus, great effort had to be put forth to ensure its correctness. Now that firmware can be easily updated, management is wiling to release crap software with the intention of fixing it later.

Finally, the i3 is a new platform and OTA should have been part of the design since initial implementation.
.
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      12-28-2014, 04:45 PM   #9
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Keeping my car out of the hands of the dealer is worth its weight in gold.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jadnashuanh View Post
...IMHO, I don't find Tesla's OTA updates a big bonus other than the fact that since they do NOT have dealers, and few service centers, it is probably the only way the could reasonably do it...I look at it as an initial design requirement and limitation, not necessarily a benefit...
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      12-28-2014, 04:46 PM   #10
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Exactly!

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Originally Posted by BMWrules7 View Post
I disagree, with all respect.

Bank switched firmware/software updates are well understood in the art. A failure to boot or come online can cause instant reversion to the alternate (previous) bank.

It is precisely the fact that firmware can be updated that has led to mediocrity in engineering. In the old days, firmware was truly "firm" and updates were astronomical; thus, great effort had to be put forth to ensure its correctness. Now that firmware can be easily updated, management is wiling to release crap software with the intention of fixing it later.

Finally, the i3 is a new platform and OTA should have been part of the design since initial implementation.
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      12-28-2014, 05:07 PM   #11
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Given you have maybe a few million lines of code you know works from existing platforms, and you need some new functions for a new model added to it, and lots of man hours invested, where do you think the car manufacturers are going to go? Tesla had to develop everything from scratch, and with their business model, they had little choice.

I have confidence that most cars will eventually go to that OTA update, but I'm not surprised BMW hasn't done it yet.
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      12-28-2014, 05:14 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWrules7
Quote:
Originally Posted by jadnashuanh
Limited production prototypes will not always show the same results as a large-scale production piece. A part failed, only when hot, and then, not all of them did, so it is quite possible, that never came up during the R&D. THen again, it could have been a process change with the switch to large scale production, or the circuit board was laid out differently but with the same parts, and one trace ended up a bit too small or too long, or too close together, and it failed when hot.

IOW, not everything shows up in R&D or prototype stages. The important part is that they are fixing it to restore advertised capabilities.

While BMW could do s/w updates OTA, there's the potential of causing someone's vehicle to be non-operational when they really needed it even if you tried to execute it in the middle of the night. SOme things, once started, can't be stopped, and you are at risk until it finishes. THen, what if for some reason, there's a glitch and you wake up the next morning, get in your car and it fails to function?! Much safer and more control when done at the dealer's. Or, you decide to leave early, or are out late, and then find your car in the middle of a software update and you're stuck until it is finished?

BMW will let you update some non-critical items yourself, and those again could be done OTA, but some people would be really annoyed if they had everything optimized where they want only to find out the next time they got in the car, the screen was different, the menus had been update, and they can't find what they are looking for because it moved, or maybe even eliminated or combined with something else.

IMHO, I don't find Tesla's OTA updates a big bonus other than the fact that since they do NOT have dealers, and few service centers, it is probably the only way the could reasonably do it...I look at it as an initial design requirement and limitation, not necessarily a benefit.

All modern BMW's are essentially computer driven, and could be optimized for OTA updates, but it would take a huge new effort. I'm sure a good portion of the i3 logic was cloned, and there are a fair amount of common modules with other BMWs...starting over from scratch would be daunting.
I disagree, with all respect.

Bank switched firmware/software updates are well understood in the art. A failure to boot or come online can cause instant reversion to the alternate (previous) bank.

It is precisely the fact that firmware can be updated that has led to mediocrity in engineering. In the old days, firmware was truly "firm" and updates were astronomical; thus, great effort had to be put forth to ensure its correctness. Now that firmware can be easily updated, management is wiling to release crap software with the intention of fixing it later.

Finally, the i3 is a new platform and OTA should have been part of the design since initial implementation.
.
+1, BMW should eventually get this ability
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      12-28-2014, 08:53 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by antzcrashing View Post
+1, BMW should eventually get this ability
I'm not sure the incentive for BMW, or any major manufacturer, is there for OTA updates. Outside of Tesla, there are extensive dealer service centers that will cry foul about taking this 'service' away from them.

Before OTA updates become mainstream, I think a change in how cars are purchased will need to happen. People will need to be able to buy directly from the factory, and if desired, never step foot into a dealership.

A parallel in the tech world is how Apple and Android phones recieve updates. Apple phones get them straight from Apple. Android phones may or may not get an update depending on the 'dealer'.
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      12-28-2014, 10:25 PM   #14
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I'm sure bmw and dealerships currently still enjoy bringing its customers back to their service centre as there business model enjoys the benefits of the"bmw tax"that makes this company so successful and I doubt they will adopt OTA updates anytime in the near future as I'm sure this will bring much less revenue....but their bean counters will ultimately have the final say
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      12-29-2014, 01:47 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alumac
Quote:
Originally Posted by antzcrashing View Post
+1, BMW should eventually get this ability
I'm not sure the incentive for BMW, or any major manufacturer, is there for OTA updates. Outside of Tesla, there are extensive dealer service centers that will cry foul about taking this 'service' away from them.

Before OTA updates become mainstream, I think a change in how cars are purchased will need to happen. People will need to be able to buy directly from the factory, and if desired, never step foot into a dealership.

A parallel in the tech world is how Apple and Android phones recieve updates. Apple phones get them straight from Apple. Android phones may or may not get an update depending on the 'dealer'.
Well, bmw loses its shirt on software updates for Idrive. The cost savings of not having a $200 per hour tech spending his time twiddling his thumbs while one car at a time, taking up a precious car bay, is hooked up to the BMW update computer for 8 stinking hours. That's ridiculous and that alone is motivation to move to OTA.

Moreover, many techs want to do the software update after hours so that the system can update the customers car at night to free up the bay during the day---well, this costs a ton of money (compared to OTA) because bmw has to give a loaner car to the customer. Plus, the customer is totally inconvenienced.

The current method bmw uses for updating Idrive is deeply flawed. Whenever the local tech has problems with the update, they have to get a German engineer conferenced in to the situation---essentially a manual OTA.

This is nonsense. This problem stems from every subsystem requiring its own update and version control. OTA will be a competitive requirement in the near future. Once Mercedes does it, then bmw will have no choice. So, bmw might as well do it now.

But, that's not the bmw way. BMW does not innovate. BMW is a copier. Almost every great BMW feature was invented or implemented by a competitor.
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      12-29-2014, 06:54 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWrules7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alumac
Quote:
Originally Posted by antzcrashing View Post
+1, BMW should eventually get this ability
I'm not sure the incentive for BMW, or any major manufacturer, is there for OTA updates. Outside of Tesla, there are extensive dealer service centers that will cry foul about taking this 'service' away from them.

Before OTA updates become mainstream, I think a change in how cars are purchased will need to happen. People will need to be able to buy directly from the factory, and if desired, never step foot into a dealership.

A parallel in the tech world is how Apple and Android phones recieve updates. Apple phones get them straight from Apple. Android phones may or may not get an update depending on the 'dealer'.
Well, bmw loses its shirt on software updates for Idrive. The cost savings of not having a $200 per hour tech spending his time twiddling his thumbs while one car at a time, taking up a precious car bay, is hooked up to the BMW update computer for 8 stinking hours. That's ridiculous and that alone is motivation to move to OTA.

Moreover, many techs want to do the software update after hours so that the system can update the customers car at night to free up the bay during the day---well, this costs a ton of money (compared to OTA) because bmw has to give a loaner car to the customer. Plus, the customer is totally inconvenienced.

The current method bmw uses for updating Idrive is deeply flawed. Whenever the local tech has problems with the update, they have to get a German engineer conferenced in to the situation---essentially a manual OTA.

This is nonsense. This problem stems from every subsystem requiring its own update and version control. OTA will be a competitive requirement in the near future. Once Mercedes does it, then bmw will have no choice. So, bmw might as well do it now.

But, that's not the bmw way. BMW does not innovate. BMW is a copier. Almost every great BMW feature was invented or implemented by a competitor.
Wow not sure where you get your info, but just because you think this stuff, does not make any of it true.
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      12-29-2014, 07:58 AM   #17
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Good to see owners will be able to charge at the rate they were sold on now.

side note: about OTA updates, bmw will likely never do it because like most dealerships, they want to inspect the car (even if in for a software update that is covered) to find other things "wrong" with the car that "need immediate correction" so they can continue to make money. Dealerships make a lot of money off their service bay and they will do everything to keep it running. While software updates run overnight, they can also "repair" anything else they deemed wrong.

As for buying direct from a factory, that is being fought right now and tesla is losing in a lot of states. The dealership world has approximately 40,000 dealerships in the US alone. Think of the jobs lost and then where would you have your car serviced? There is a reason they are fighting it. Not only would the dealerships be hurt by it, but all the software that runs those businesses, ADP, R&R, etc.. along with all the third party sites like cars.com, autotrader, carfax, etc..
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      12-29-2014, 09:53 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWrules7 View Post
Well, bmw loses its shirt on software updates for Idrive. The cost savings of not having a $200 per hour tech spending his time twiddling his thumbs while one car at a time, taking up a precious car bay, is hooked up to the BMW update computer for 8 stinking hours. That's ridiculous and that alone is motivation to move to OTA.

Moreover, many techs want to do the software update after hours so that the system can update the customers car at night to free up the bay during the day---well, this costs a ton of money (compared to OTA) because bmw has to give a loaner car to the customer. Plus, the customer is totally inconvenienced.

The current method bmw uses for updating Idrive is deeply flawed. Whenever the local tech has problems with the update, they have to get a German engineer conferenced in to the situation---essentially a manual OTA.

This is nonsense. This problem stems from every subsystem requiring its own update and version control. OTA will be a competitive requirement in the near future. Once Mercedes does it, then bmw will have no choice. So, bmw might as well do it now.

But, that's not the bmw way. BMW does not innovate. BMW is a copier. Almost every great BMW feature was invented or implemented by a competitor.
I update my iDrive at my house via a software download from BMW and USB drive. Where do you live where BMW dealerships pay their techs $200 an hour? You seem to severely misinformed, Then you post your lack of knowledge like an expert. Hilarious!
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      12-29-2014, 10:54 AM   #19
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Sorry for being a litle bit straighforward: it is one thing to be ignorant in a certain field, and another one to prove that. Please do yourself a favor and read before you write down your assumptions. BMW iis a great inovator.
If you want to talk about copiators and plagiators look at the japanese, Toyota for that matter not to thegermans. One of the things that makes the Germans great -and for that reason less reliable- is that that they do invent and throw the new technology outhere, ready for you, while the japanese are using old proven technology waiting until the new one is improved. Stop posting nonsense others might believe it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWrules7 View Post
Well, bmw loses its shirt on software updates for Idrive. The cost savings of not having a $200 per hour tech spending his time twiddling his thumbs while one car at a time, taking up a precious car bay, is hooked up to the BMW update computer for 8 stinking hours. That's ridiculous and that alone is motivation to move to OTA.

Moreover, many techs want to do the software update after hours so that the system can update the customers car at night to free up the bay during the day---well, this costs a ton of money (compared to OTA) because bmw has to give a loaner car to the customer. Plus, the customer is totally inconvenienced.

The current method bmw uses for updating Idrive is deeply flawed. Whenever the local tech has problems with the update, they have to get a German engineer conferenced in to the situation---essentially a manual OTA.

This is nonsense. This problem stems from every subsystem requiring its own update and version control. OTA will be a competitive requirement in the near future. Once Mercedes does it, then bmw will have no choice. So, bmw might as well do it now.

But, that's not the bmw way. BMW does not innovate. BMW is a copier. Almost every great BMW feature was invented or implemented by a competitor.

Last edited by Tracus; 12-29-2014 at 11:00 AM.
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      12-29-2014, 01:08 PM   #20
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As for buying direct from a factory, that is being fought right now and tesla is losing in a lot of states. The dealership world has approximately 40,000 dealerships in the US alone. Think of the jobs lost and then where would you have your car serviced? There is a reason they are fighting it. Not only would the dealerships be hurt by it, but all the software that runs those businesses, ADP, R&R, etc.. along with all the third party sites like cars.com, autotrader, carfax, etc..
I get the economic impact of allowing direct orders, but that's no excuse to not move away from an outdated model. Personally, I'd rather not pay for a 'service' I don't need. I'd much rather see dealerships become service and support places. There is value there. Considering the information freely available today, having to go in and dicker about price adds no value to me.

The current model can, and should, change IMO.
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      12-29-2014, 05:28 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Alumac View Post
I get the economic impact of allowing direct orders, but that's no excuse to not move away from an outdated model. Personally, I'd rather not pay for a 'service' I don't need. I'd much rather see dealerships become service and support places. There is value there. Considering the information freely available today, having to go in and dicker about price adds no value to me.

The current model can, and should, change IMO.
i think we are seeing a shift in the industry now with how much the internet provides and companies like TrueCar. If the dealer wants to play games such as you are describing, then you as the buyer have the best hand and thats to walk away. If ordering a car is what you want, just walk in with what you want and how much you feel its worth to you to have and if the dealer agrees, end of story. The main reason dealerships will never go away is because of used cars. That is where all the money is. New cars sell by volume and thats it. They dont care what they make off one car. Usually its the backend that makes all the profit. The F&I guy is the man upselling all those contracts and add-ons. The salesman will sell it under invoice to meet an OEM goal to make a tier while the f&i manager makes pure profit off extended warranties, finance reserve and dealership specific items that cost them very little.
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      12-29-2014, 05:38 PM   #22
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BMW doesn't really want to be a used car dealer, and to sell new cars, they'd effectively have to become one.

I tend to keep my cars awhile, but after the warranty runs out, I can be more selective about where I take it. But, prior to that, I feel more comfortable taking it to a place that has trained mechanics with factory support to figure out what is wrong. With the warranty supplied in the USA on new cars by BMW, why not take advantage of their care?

Software updates become slower to non-existent as a car ages unless it needs a new module, and that may require an update to make it all work. By having the dealership work on the vehicle, BMW can keep a database of what each car has and alert you or the dealer should something critical need to be updated.

Certainly, software can be designed to be updated OTA, but if the car is not at a dealership when it happens, there could be a hiccup, and then your car is potentially inoperative. Not a good thing either for you or BMW. Since the software core is huge on modern cars, some updates could require all modules to be replaces, and if you did that OTA, the volume of data could take many, many hours. If you wrote the code so that a single module could be updated, it would then have to be compatible with both the older version (who knows how many iterations) AND the new version, so that it could work piecemeal as it was applied. Just like updating your Windows platform, some things require a reboot...and, if it had to move an entire image, that can take awhile and again, just like with your windows machine...strange things can happen if it somehow gets interrupted. Much safer to have it all done under controlled circumstances both for the customer and BMW, let alone potential liability issues.

Now, if you had reliable gigabit OTA data pipe to your car, it might be a different story. Not going to happen in the near term. The car's SIM isn't the latest technology, and the USA data structure for cellular network is way behind most of the rest of the industrialized world.
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