The world-renowned luxury German automaker Mercedes-Benz just unveiled its MBUX Virtual Assistant (VA) at the Consumer Electronics Show 2024 in Las Vegas.
The assistant is stacked with features, including non-fungible token options and generative AI capabilities that are aimed at enhancing the driver experience.
According to reports, the new virtual assistant is “the most human-like interface” Mercedes-Benz has ever offered. It has four different emotional profiles (personal, predictive, natural, and empathetic) that offer more personalized responses and natural interactions with consumers.
The MBUX VA works by leveraging large language models from OpenAI’s ChatGPT — a move that was announced in June 2023. However, the company has noted that it could use other chatbots in the future if they prove to be superior.
The chief technology officer at the company, Markus Schäfer, said that AI will help Mercedes-Benz “know its driver like never before.” He added that it will “complement” the lives of customers “in their cars and in other areas” as well.
Some of the ways it will do so is by learning the preferences of drivers. It can automatically turn on seat massagers, switch to a driver’s favorite radio station, or dim lights at night, among other things. Worth noting, the MBUX virtual assistant, which is expected to launch in 2025, will not share data across drivers. Instead, it’s focused on individual cars, and drivers have the option of opting out if they choose.
The company also announced MBUX Surround Navigation, which runs on the next-generation MB.OS operating system and 3D game-engine graphics, and it has made improvements to its in-car entertainment (ICE) systems by incorporating MBUX Sound Drive and an in-car music experience designed by recording artist Will.i.am.
Lastly, in a move that further shows Mercedes-Benz commitment to Web3, new vehicles will come with an MBUX Collectibles app that lets drivers display their NFTs on the car’s dashboard.
Mercedes-Benz Continues to Experiment in Web3
Nascent technologies like NFTs and blockchain continue to infiltrate a myriad of sectors, and car manufacturers like Mercedes-Benz have been at the forefront of the transformation. At Rarity Sniper, we’ve covered several articles about Mercedes-Benz investing in Web3. Here are three of the top stories about the company.
First, in August 2023, Mercedes-Benz released its third NFT collection in its ‘Core’ series: NXT Icons. The collection consisted of 18,000 tokens minted on Ethereum that explore the company’s past, present, and future.
Next, in December 2022, the luxury automaker filed five trademarks related to Web3. The applications were specifically focused on NFT-backed media, virtual merchandise, cryptocurrency trading, and the metaverse.
Finally, in January 2022, Mercedes-Benz dropped its first NFT project with the Web3 artist collective known as ART2PEOPLE. The exclusive ‘NF-G’ collection featured five artists who reinterpreted the classic G-Class Mercedes-Benz off-road vehicle.
While Mercedes-Benz’s moves in Web3 have been slow and measured, it appears the company is embracing the latest iteration of the internet and AI with open arms. The latest improvements to its MBUX Virtual Assistant are more evidence of this fact.