BFM launches Malaysia’s first app that works with Apple’s CarPlay

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KUALA LUMPUR (May 17): BFM Media Sdn Bhd, operator of the BFM 89.9 radio station, today unveiled the BFM CarPlay application which enables users to listen to a live stream of its radio shows and podcasts, as well as their own playlist.
 
BFM Media is the first Malaysian company to launch an Apple iOs app that works with the CarPlay dashboard operating system.
 
“With this launch, BFM joins leading global content platforms such as Spotify and Pandora, Stitcher and Apple’s own native apps Podcasts and Music, to offer audio content to drivers and passengers of car models that offer the Apple CarPlay car dashboard operating system,” BFM said in a statement.
 
The BFM CarPlay app was developed for the radio station by Snappymob, a Malaysian-based iOS and Android app development company which has been developing BFM Media’s iOS apps since 2016.
 
Apple has positioned CarPlay as the “ultimate copilot”, allowing drivers of CarPlay-enabled cars to port a select group of iOS apps on their iPhone to their car’s built-in display.
 
With Siri Voice and other car model-specific dashboard and steering wheel controls, drivers can access CarPlay apps to get directions, make calls, send messages and listen to audio content, all in a way that allows them to stay focused on the road.
 
While most of BFM’s current listeners are listening to BFM through their traditional car radio FM receiver, the station’s current FM transmission on 89.9 MHz is restricted to the Klang Valley.
 
Numerous applications to the industry regulator, the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission, for FM frequencies to transmit in other urban centres in Malaysia, have been rejected on the basis of unavailable frequencies, said BFM.
 
“CarPlay allows BFM to bypass the FM frequency transmission restrictions to reach car drivers in other parts of Malaysia, as well as globally.
 
“All that is needed is an iPhone with a data connection to the internet, and an Apple CarPlay-enabled car model,” it added.
 
To encourage the usage of the BFM CarPlay app, BFM has worked with mobile telcos U Mobile Sdn Bhd and Digi.Com Bhd to white list the BFM Carplay app, so that no data charges are incurred when using it.
 
All U Mobile customers and Digi Prepaid LiVE and Digi Broadband plan customers benefit from this suppression of data charges when using the BFM CarPlay app, the statement said, adding it is in the testing phase with Maxis Bhd to offer the same benefit to Maxis customers too.
 
“We look forward, over time, to the increasing proliferation of CarPlay among car makes, models and standalone car entertainment systems in Malaysia,” said BMF Media’s managing director Malek Ali.
 
“With greater penetration of CarPlay, more and more car drivers and passengers outside of the Klang Valley will have access to BFM’s engaging discussions with thought leaders on the economy, business and nation-building, despite BFM not being available on FM radio in their area,” he said.