During CES 2024 last week, Mercedes-Benz showcased its vision for a highly personalized user experience within and beyond the car. Its flagship development was the integrated MBUX Virtual Assistant, a solution that uses advanced software and generative AI. It aims to establish a more natural and intuitive connection with the driver, providing proactive support and making tasks simpler.
MBUX Virtual Assistant, operating on the in-house-developed Mercedes-Benz operating system (MB.OS), is set to debut in vehicles based on the forthcoming MMA platform. The Concept CLA Class, which premiered at CES via the vehicle Concept CLA Class, offered a sneak peek into the future of MB.OS. It is designed to bring a new level of interaction, using generative AI and proactive intelligence to offer helpful suggestions based on learned behavior.
The CLA Class vehicle provides a glimpse into the future with its multi-faceted architecture and three-display MBUX Superscreen. MB.OS has a chip-to-cloud architecture, which ensures deep integration, full control of sensors and actuators, and constant updates to keep vehicles technologically current.
The assistant introduces four core personality traits – natural, predictive, personal and empathetic – to ensure it stays attuned to customer needs and preferences. By incorporating natural dialogue, large language models, predictive capabilities and an emotional neural voice, the MBUX Virtual Assistant aims to create a more human-like, personalized experience, according to Mercedes. Drivers can tailor the assistant further through customizable options in a central hub.
The system also utilizes MBUX Surround Navigation, facilitated by MB.OS, to elevate route guidance by integrating real-time reactions with a real-world view of the car’s surroundings. The incorporation of information into the driver display, utilizing 3D graphics, can enhance situational awareness. Mercedes reports that it provides a comprehensive overview, including traffic types, pedestrians, hazards and realistic route guidance.
Expanding its entertainment options, Mercedes also introduced an array of third-party apps with over-the-air (OTA) updates. These updates ensure customers have access to the latest content and features tailored to their preferences. Additions include a Meetings app, supporting Microsoft Teams conferences, and collaborations with companies like Sony Pictures Entertainment’s RIDEVU to enrich the video streaming experience for clients.
Visual communication is also a key factor, with the incorporation of powerful 3D graphics made with Unity’s game engine. A ‘living’ star avatar expresses various moods and states, providing intuitive feedback to the driver.
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