Car maker BMW is controversially locking down certain car features and making them “recharge” for real-world use.
It is an observable fact that gamers do not always get along with each other. Whether it’s opinions about games, fandoms with opposing ideals, or age-old debates between consoles or PCs, gamers will truly disagree on many things. However, one thing that seems to make gamers disgusted is the ridiculous top-up transactions in the “blood sucking” style.
Unfortunately, bloodthirsty recharge seems to have broken out of the digital realm of games and become a reality. According to a recent report, a premium automaker has started charging a monthly fee to use certain optional features. And while this is currently only happening in certain countries, the number of subscription-requiring features appears to be growing.
As reported by The Verge, automaker BMW has started selling a monthly subscription that allows customers to use heated seats in their cars. The registration cost is equivalent to about 18 USD or more than 400 thousand VND a month. Customers can also choose to pay $180 for a year, or more than VND4 million, and $300, or about VND7 million, for three years, or $415, or nearly VND10 million, for “unlimited” use of the device. heated seats in their cars. Other premium subscription features include adaptive cruise control and a high-beam assist system.
It is unclear exactly when BMW will launch this service. The company did not hesitate to advertise its deposit transactions in the real world. A BMW representative was also unable to answer The Verge’s questions about the service rollout. In addition, there is no public list of countries where BMW will make these registrations available. However, BMW currently offers these subscriptions in places like Korea, UK, Germany, South Africa and New Zealand. The service isn’t available in the US, but there’s no reason to believe BMW won’t roll it out in more countries if this launch proves successful.
Heated seats aren’t the first optional feature the automaker has locked down and required a monthly subscription. BMW announced in 2020 that it would offer deals for optional features like adaptive cruise control, automatic high beams, and automatic traffic camera warnings. Automakers also often raise prices for models with optional features such as heated seats and steering wheel. In this case, however, BMW charges a monthly fee for customers to access functions that are pre-installed on their vehicle.
To be fair, there are cases where a subscription service can be quite affordable, for example traffic camera alerts being an ongoing expense for the company, so BMW asking for a monthly fee is a no-brainer. easy to understand. Furthermore, it is debatable whether the monthly fee for optional functions is different from the price increase for the upfront fee. However, it sets a disturbing precedent and is reminiscent of the game developers’ old tactic of selling first-day DLC on disc. It also faced similar resistance from customers, who criticized it for making it difficult for consumers. However, it seems only time will tell if these deals will continue to appear outside of the gaming industry and whether it will provide any benefit.
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