Mercedes-Benz integrates ChatGPT beta program in U.S. vehicles through its MBUX infotainment system

The beta program, scheduled to launch on June 16, 2023, will be available to more than 900,000 U.S.-based Mercedes-Benz owners who request it.

Mercedes-Benz is integrating ChatGPT, a state-of-the-art AI language model, into the voice control system of its cars, giving American drivers a more intuitive and conversational voice assistant through its MBUX infotainment system, the company announced today.

The beta program, scheduled to launch on June 16, 2023, will be available to more than 900,000 U.S.-based Mercedes-Benz owners who request it.

The beta testing is open to all customers, who can sign up either through the Mercedes me app or directly from their vehicle by using the voice command, “Hey Mercedes, I want to join the beta program.” The program’s deployment will be executed over-the-air, using the Azure OpenAI Service from Microsoft, which provides enterprise-level security and AI functionalities.

“Hey Mercedes,” the current MBUX Voice Assistant, already commands a broad range of actions, delivering weather and sports updates, offering answers to questions about nearby points of interest, and managing various smart functions.

ChatGPT, unlike conventional voice assistants limited to preset tasks, utilizes a large language model to enhance natural language understanding, thereby broadening the array of possible conversational topics.

By incorporating the validated data from the MBUX Voice Assistant with the conversational format of ChatGPT, Mercedes-Benz delivers a voice assistant that not only recognizes natural voice commands but also engages in conversations, the company says.

Users who ask about their destination details, request a new dinner recipe, or seek the answer to a complex question, will get more comprehensive responses, allowing them to keep their focus on the road, Mercedes-Benz says.

“The integration of ChatGPT with Microsoft in our controlled cloud environment is a milestone on our way to making our cars the center of our customers’ digital lives. Our beta program boosts the existing Hey Mercedes functions such as navigation queries, weather requests and others with the capabilities of ChatGPT,” says Markus Schäfer, Member of the Board of Management of Mercedes-Benz Group AG, Chief Technology Officer, Development & Procurement. “This way, we aim to support conversations with natural dialogues and follow-up questions. Our customers can always rely on us to ensure the best possible protection of their data privacy. Everything is under one big goal: Redefining the relationship with your Mercedes.”

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