BMW’s New Theatre Mode Turns Your Car’s Rear Seat Area Into a Cinema Lounge

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BMW showed up to this year’s Consumer Electronics Show with a wide range of interesting products and technologies, such as a BMW iX capable of changing color at the push of a button, plus the new 2023 iX M60 model. However, we’re here to talk about the so-called BMW Theatre Screen with built-in Amazon Fire TV. Basically, it transforms the rear seat area of your car into a private cinema lounge, featuring surround sound and 5G connectivity. The 31-inch panorama display comes with a 32:9 format, to go with a resolution of up to 8k and smart TV functionality. “In Theatre Mode, the rear of the interior is transformed into a private cinema lounge. With the 31-inch display, 5G connectivity, 8k resolution, surround sound and individual streaming program, an unprecedented experience is created that sets new standards in in-car entertainment,” said BMW AG board member, Frank Weber. The large screen extends from the headliner upon request, using a sophisticated rotary movement courtesy of two articulated rails (one on each side). The unit itself can be controlled via touch operation or using the touch pads integrated into the rear doors. Also, thanks to a partnership with Amazon, the German carmaker can give consumers access (Fire TV) to pretty much the same content they stream at home. Customers in China meanwhile will get a market-specific offering. Now, it goes without saying that in order to get a genuine theatre-like experience, you must also be able to provide users with excellent sound quality. This is where BMW’s cooperation with renowned film score composer Hans Zimmer comes into play. The Academy Award winner created the sound experience you hear whenever the Theatre Screen moves out of the headliner, up until it reaches its final position. The audio experience is then left in the hands of the Bowers & Wilkins Diamond Surround Sound system. At the same time, the roller sunblinds for the side windows and the rear window close automatically and the ambient lighting is dimmed. As for the versatility of the 8K display, you can play movies and TV shows in either 16:9, 21:9 or even 32:9 format, at about 8000 x 2000 pixels. This technology will eventually make it into production, but as of right now, we’re not sure exactly when you’ll be able to watch high-res movies in the back of your BMW iX or any other BMW for that matter.