Screen-Shot-2016-04-04-at-1.45.28-PM-300x246.

BMW's new connectivity will initially focus on journey planning (Photo: BMW)

BMW used Microsoft’s Build 2016 developer conference to unveil the first version of its BMW Connected mobility platform.

The new BMW “Open Mobility Cloud,” which runs on the Microsoft Azure infrastructure and will be available for Apple's iOS mobile operating system, is fully scalable and a key component of the premium car maker’s strategy to offer an integrated set of new-mobility products.

“ We are really focused on how we can integrate our offerings smoothly and seamlessly into the digital life of our customers,” Thom Brenner, BMW vice president of Digital Life, said at the conference.

“BMW Connected is more than an app,” he added. “It’s an experience on top of an intelligent platform that can learn about your driving habits.”

Journey management is the core service in the first version of BMW’s platform. It allows travel-planning before a trip and continued services afterward. BMW’s platform uses data from various sources, including real-time traffic, a user’s calendar, contacts, messages, apps and habits learned over time.

In his address to the Build conference,  Brenner said BMW's vision of seamless mobility is based on three pillars: automated driving, digital services and the interior of the future. "But what's really key is to bring all those pillars to life together," he said.

Microsoft is making a strong push to establish itself as a big player in the connected-car market. The software maker announced at the Las Vegas CES consumer electronics show in January that it has partnerships in place with a range of car companies, including Volvo Cars, Nissan, Toyota and Ford. It said it is working with these companies “to bring their cars into the mobile-first, cloud-first world.”