(Pocket-lint) – Audi is opening up more options for car owners, leveraging the myAudi app to let drivers access new features for their car.
But these aren’t firmware updates to the hardware, they are feature updates that you might not have specified when you ordered the car – for example some of the advanced driver assistance functions or lighting.
The new functions on demand service will mean that you can enable, for example, the park assist function where the car will park itself for you. If you normally park on your drive at home, but then go on holiday where parking is a little more competitive or challenging, you’ll be able to turn on the feature for the duration of your holiday, for example.
That’s because the hardware for these features is included when you buy the car, it’s just not activated. Thanks to modern connectivity, you’ll be able to access some features when you want them, without having to pay for them upfront when you order the car.
Audi says that lighting, driver assistance and infotainment are obvious areas where these features can be added, but those functions will depend on the model of car that you have. In the UK, it’s going to be the Audi e-tron that leads the charge, starting with the option to enable that park assist function we mentioned, or to engage Matrix LED lighting.
Matrix LED lighting enables the car to switch off sections of the beam headlights to omit oncoming vehicles and avoid dazzling other drivers. Having used this system on dark roads, it’s incredible, giving you visibility you’d normally lack. And it will be available to engage via the myAudi app. Exactly how much it might cost, we don’t know.
This new flexible approach also enables a try-before-you-buy opportunity, where you can test something for a month before you decide whether you want it for longer. Audi says that anything you decide to add to your car is limited to that car – rather than the driver – so if you sell your car having enabled Matrix LED lights, that function will stay on the car for the next owner.
This is just a first step for Audi, but it does provide opportunities in the future for people to add functions to their car that weren’t specified at the time of purchase. Audi says that more functions will be made available in the future – and having mentioned infotainment, we expect that’s where most changes will come.
Writing by Chris Hall.