Mercedes-Benz and Microsoft Collaborate to Introduce ChatGPT AI-Powered Voice Control In Mercedes Cars
Mercedes-Benz has announced its latest initiative to expand the application of artificial intelligence (AI) by integrating it into the voice control system of its vehicles. Through the addition of ChatGPT, the voice control feature in the MBUX Voice Assistant, known as “Hey Mercedes,” will become even more intuitive and user-friendly according to the company.
Starting June 16, 2023, an optional beta program will be available in the United States for over 900,000 vehicles equipped with the MBUX infotainment system. To participate in the beta program, customers can register via the ‘Mercedes me’ app or directly from their vehicles using the voice command, “Hey Mercedes, I want to join the beta program.”
The rollout of the program will occur via an over-the-air update, allowing users to seamlessly access the latest features. Mercedes-Benz has partnered with Microsoft’s Azure OpenAI Service to integrate ChatGPT, leveraging the power and scale of Microsoft’s cloud and AI platform.
With Mercedes’ current MBUX Voice Assistant, users can currently receive sports and weather updates, obtain information about their surroundings, and control their smart homes. With the introduction of ChatGPT, Mercedes-Benz aims to enhance the existing voice control capabilities of Hey Mercedes.
Unlike most voice assistants that are limited to predefined tasks and responses, ChatGPT has a large language model which significantly improves natural language understanding and expands the range of topics it can address. With there new integration, Mercedes-Benz has effectively combined the strengths of both MBUX Voice Assistant and ChatGPT, incorporating the validated data of the former with the more conversational format of the latter.
Users will experience a voice assistant that not only accepts natural voice commands but also engages in meaningful conversations. Participants will soon be able to ask the Voice Assistant for detailed destination information, request dinner recipes, or seek answers to complex questions while driving their vehicles.
To ensure data privacy, Mercedes-Benz has collaborated with Microsoft to integrate ChatGPT. By utilizing Azure OpenAI Service, the automaker can tap into OpenAI’s state-of-the-art generative AI models while benefiting from Azure’s enterprise-grade security, privacy, and reliability features. Mercedes-Benz maintains complete control over the IT processes, with voice command data collected being stored in the secure and anonymized Mercedes-Benz Intelligent Cloud for analysis.
As another measure of data privacy, Mercedes-Benz customers are fully informed about the information collected by OpenAI and its purpose. Customers can opt-out of participating in the beta program.
“The integration of ChatGPT with Microsoft in our controlled cloud environment is a milestone on our way to making our cars the centre of our customers’ digital lives. Our beta programme boosts the existing Hey Mercedes functions such as navigation queries, weather requests and others with the capabilities of ChatGPT. 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.”, said Markus Schäfer, Mercedes-Benz board member and Chief Technology Officer.
The beta program’s initial focus is for the company’s U.S. customers, and is expected to last three months. The program allows Mercedes-Benz software developers to gain valuable insights into specific user requests. These insights will enable precise prioritization in the further development of voice control. The findings from the beta program will be instrumental in enhancing the intuitive voice assistant and defining the rollout strategy for large language models in additional markets and languages.
ChatGPT, part of the “Generative Pre-trained Transformer” family, represents a sophisticated neural network developed by OpenAI. It has been trained to create or summarize texts, answer questions, translate languages, and even generate programming code.
Mercedes-Benz is integrating ChatGPT in line with its AI principles, which emphasize accessibility and responsible use of innovative AI solutions for the benefit of its customers. The company remains committed to monitoring potential risks and continually improving the system’s performance, ensuring a responsible approach to generative AI solutions remains a top priority.
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