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BMW Cellular Data Providers 2016-2017 models?

Discussion in 'BMW' started by danzee, Mar 24, 2019.

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    I'm starting to look for a pre-owned 2016 or 2017 4 or 5 series BMW.

    My wife has as 2013 Audi with 3G/2G. Audi changed hardware and firmware in 2017. Anything before will go stupid as soon as 3G/2G becomes NLA (imminently). I don't want to suffer that fate for at least a few years in a newer BMW.

    What cellular network carrier(s) and service (4G etc) is used in 2017-2018 years in BMW 4 & 5ers for online Nav destinations and traffic data?
    I can't find a definitive answer.
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    I hope Charlson, our resident tech, has some insight - I wouldn't have any idea!
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    • Technical Service Advisor


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    The carrier is at&t and Verizon for US BMW vehicles. If you stay in the 2017 to 2018 years I believe they are upgraded units not sure if 3g or 4g. 2g ended a couple months ago and many manufactures had upset customers because they cut costs and put old tech in there tele service modules.
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    TomF BMW EnthuZiast

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    I did a search for "2016 BMW M4 telematics" because I was pretty sure that my car has 4G, and found this telematics unit and the cars it is used in: https://parts.bmwnorthwest.com/p/BM...trol-unit-TCB-US-4G/68021511/84106836777.html. It doesn't list many 5 Series models.

    A search to determine which carrier(s) BMW uses was not successful. I did find a BMW legal document dated 2016 pertaining to BMWAssist but they only refer to the "Underlying Wireless Carrier".

    My wife's previous 2011 335is Coupe had a 2G telematics unit. It had BMWAssist for free for the initial 4 yr warranty period and we renewed for one year. Shortly before the renewal expired we received a letter from BMW indicating that due to the obsolete 2G technology, she would no longer be able to use BMWAssist after her current contract expired. That would have been in May 2016. The updated telematics unit was not replaceable in her car, although I believe it was in the 2012 335is.
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    I had my 2011 335d fitted with the update. It was a no brainer really. I had 18 months of paid subscription left and BMW was offering to give me a $200 gift card or $300 in merchandise. The subscription value was $300.
    It worked very well the first year then stopped supporting email and text messages. The “genius” said it should never have worked. I now use the safety plan only which supposedly gives remote lock/unlock, send to car, as well as the SOS feature.
    BMW does not seem to know nor care how to operate a website or maintain the app. It is currently down and has been down for weeks.
    As a consolation, one support representative told me that people were leaving the dealer lots with 2019 models that lost all functionality.
    Our 2015 A4 still works flawlessly but I was not aware they were abandoning 2G/3G. I need to check on our options for continuing.

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