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BMW is employing artificial intelligence, which it calls BMW i Genius, to promote its new electric cars through an automated information service for UK customers.
“BMW i Genius” uses specially developed software to interact with potential customers in a live question and answer format that works on a mobile platform.
According to BMW, users simply text in a question relating to BMW i and the BMW i Genius system will instantly respond with a detailed and helpful answer. The adaptive system is capable of interpreting words, the context of those words and the sentiment behind each question in order to respond. Subsequent questions can be asked allowing an informative, real-time conversation.
The system was developed by London Brand Management, in a partnership facilitated by a business accelerator program based in London’s Tech City called The Bakery and media agency Vizeum.
“We are delighted to have been chosen by BMW Group as a partner for the launch of this exciting and innovative electric vehicle,” said London Brand Management founder, 19-year-old Dmitry Aksenov. “Like the BMW i3, our Artificial Intelligence software is truly groundbreaking and provides a unique channel for BMW and its customers to make better buying decisions by getting access to the right information at the right time in the right place.”
BMW Group UK Marketing Director Chris Brownridge said the company’s marketing approach for its electric cars is as innovative as the cars themselves.
“BMW i Genius is capable of understanding each question and responding accurately every time just as if you were talking to an expert from the company. The system operates around the clock allowing the consumer to ask any question relating to the i cars but without the hassle of having to pick up the phone or go into a dealership,” said Brownridge.
BMW said users need to text their question to the shortcode 84737 to use the BMW i Genius service. The artificial intelligence program will then activate and generate a response regarding the BMW i3 or i8.
BMW confirmed two BMW i cars for production, the fully-electric BMW i3 megacity vehicle and the plug-in hybrid BMW i8 sports car. The BMW i3 is BMW’s first fully-electric production car and is due to go on sale in the UK in late 2013. Like the i8, the BMW i3 features an all-aluminum chassis combined with a passenger cell made entirely from carbon fiber reinforced plastic.
As well as the vehicles themselves, BMW said its BMW i brand will encompass a range of premium services for mobility aimed at optimizing the use of parking spaces, recharging infrastructure, ‘smart’ navigation systems, intermodal route planning and access to other BMW vehicles on an “on-demand” basis.