Alexa support coming to BMW’s ‘Connected’ assistant app

BMW first revealed its revamped “Connected” assistant app in March, and it will finally be available this month. As a reminder, it does a lot more than sync your phone and car, acting more like the love-child of Waze and Google Now. It can scan your device’s calendar and address book, then calculate the drive time to an appointment based on your route and real-time traffic data. After factoring the vehicle’s fuel or battery level, it will send a “time to leave” notification to your iPhone or Apple Watch.

All of that information, including addresses and arrival times, is automatically synced to your car when you get in, assuming it’s a ConnectedDrive BMW, Rolls Royce or Mini. Yes, other apps including Android Auto, Waze and others let you do most of those functions. But Connected, being integrated with the vehicle, also lets you lock and unlock your vehicle, flash the headlights to help find it, and turn on the AC before you get in, among other functions. Once you arrive, it’ll give you “last mile” walking or transit directions.

Later this year, BMW will join Ford as one of the few automakers with Alexa support. That’ll let you shout commands at an Echo to remotely execute door locking and other functions, or get info like your vehicle’s fuel or battery levels. BMW says that the app will arrive on iOS sometime in August, with the Alexa update coming later in the year. There’s no word yet on Android support.

Source: BMW

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PS Vita slasher ‘Severed’ is coming to iOS, 3DS and Wii U

Back in April developer Drinkbox Studios, best known for the colorful platformer Guacamelee!, launched a little game called Severed on the PlayStation Vita. As much as we love Sony’s handheld, it’s not a popular system, so we’re not surprised to hear that the game is headed to other platforms. Specifically, the Nintendo 3DS, Wii U and iOS. If you need a quick recap, Severed is a first-person dungeon crawler starring a one-armed warrior named Sasha. The touch-based controls have you fighting monsters and solving puzzles to overcome its bright but creepy world.

The game, which was well received by the press, has been tweaked a little for the new systems. On the Wii U, for instance, you’ll be playing with the chunky GamePad and, most likely, its slide-out stylus. Drinkbox is promising some graphical improvements and support for “Off-TV Play,” meaning you can continue adventuring while someone else is hogging the TV. The studio will also support cross-buy, meaning you can purchase the game once and play it on both your Wii U and 3DS. The App Store version will, of course, be a separate purchase for iPhone and iPad owners.

All three ports are slated for “this summer” and there’s no word yet on pricing. But as a frame of reference, it’s currently $ 14.99 on PSN.

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