in the hands of BMW, google’s augmented reality technology, tango, has given smartphone users the chance to virtually materialize bimmers in their garage, their living room and on top of their cat. now, millions of apple consumers worldwide can do the same with the BMW i visualiser app. BMW i is one of the first car brands to take advantage of apple’s ARKit, but don’t go opening the app store just yet. 

video for the BMW i visualiser app using google’s AR smartphone technology, tango
all images courtesy of BMW



instead of a satisfyingly clickable, solid-blue ‘GET’ next to the app, some iOS folk may only open the app store to find a ‘GET’ that is gray and un-clickable–and everyone knows that an un-clickable ‘GET’ isn’t a ‘GET’ at all. the app is only available for download on iPhone 6s/6s plus and newer, as well as the 2017 iPad and iPad pro. the app unfortunately ‘requires specific features not available on this device.’ but that is to be expected.

BMW i Visualiser
users can select which BMW i model they would like to visualize



overall, the app is a good experiment in the early days of augmented reality and, for now, the BMW i visualiser is inching ahead of the smartphone marketing curve. in the past, car junkies would scatter their walls with posters. now, they can project them virtually wherever they like. these shaky projections viewed on tiny screens don’t quite replace a classic photo of a sexy car mounted on the wall of a man-cave, but they might be close. with every passing day, AR technology is becoming more advanced, requiring more and more features not available on certain devices. 

BMW i Visualiser
will early AR apps such as the visualiser help users make more informed purchases?