Voice Activation System BMW 2010-5 Series

The BMW 2010-5 Series may have a voice activation system, depending on the specific model and trim level. The BMW Voice Control system allows the driver to control certain functions of the car, such as the radio, navigation, and climate control, using voice commands. To use the system, the driver presses a button on the steering wheel and speaks a command. If the 2010-5 Series you’re referring to is equipped with the BMW Voice Control system, consult the car’s owner manual for more information on how to use it.

The concept

The voice activation system allows you to control operation of various vehicle systems without removing your hands from the steering wheel. Individual menu items on the Control Display can be spoken as commands. This frees you of having to use the controller. The voice activation system transforms your oral commands into control signals for the selected systems and provides support in the form of instructions or questions. The voice activation system uses a special microphone located in the area of the interior rearview mirror.


Via iDrive, set the language that applies for the voice activation system in order to enable identification of the spoken commands. To set the language of iDrive.

{…} Say the specified commands word for word. {{…}} Indicates responses of the voice activation system.

Voice commands

Activating voice activation system
  1. Press the black button.
Voice Activation System BMW 2010 5 Series

This symbol on the Control Display and an acoustic signal tell you that the voice activation system can respond to commands.

Voice Activation System BMW 2010 5 Series1
  1. Say the command. The command is displayed on the Control Display.

This symbol is displayed on the Control Display when you can enter additional commands. If no other commands are possible, then operate the equipment via iDrive.

Terminating or canceling voice activation system

Press the black button on the steering wheel or {Cancel}

In dialogs that call for a text of your choice, the procedure can only be canceled using the button on the steering wheel.

Possible commands

The commands available in each case depend on the menu item selected on the Control Display. To have the possible commands read aloud:

{Voice commands}

For example, if “CD/DVD” is selected, the commands for operating CD/Multimedia are read aloud.

Calling up functions immediately via short commands

Short commands enable you to perform certain functions immediately, irrespective of which menu item is selected.

Example: selecting the track of a CD
  1. Switch on entertainment sound output if necessary.
  2. Press the button on the steering wheel.
  3. Select the music track, for instance: {CD track 4} System says: {{Track 4}}
Setting the voice dialog

You can set whether the system should use the standard dialog or a shorter variant. In the shorter variant of the voice dialog, the prompts and responses from the system are abbreviated.

  1. “Settings”
  2. “Language/Units”
  3. “Speech mode:”
Voice Activation System BMW 2010 5 Series2
  1. Select a setting:
    • “Default”
    • “Short”


To operate the phone by voice, For voice commands, bear in mind the following:

  • Do not use the voice activation system to initiate an Emergency Request. In stressful situations, the voice and vocal pitch can change. This can unnecessarily delay the establishment of a telephone connection.
  • Say the commands and numbers smoothly and at normal volume, avoiding excessive emphasis and pauses. This also applies when spelling out and saying a full word during destination entry.
  • When selecting a radio station, use the common pronunciation of the station name.
  • For entries in the voice-activated phone book, only use names in the language of the voice activation system and no abbreviations.
  • Keep the doors, windows and glass sunroof* or panorama glass sunroof* closed to prevent interference from ambient noise.
  • Avoid making other noise in the vehicle while speaking.

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