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Mercedes previews entertainment-focused MB.OS, Google, Nvidia join

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Mercedes-Benz today unveiled for the first time its next-generation in-vehicle operating system, which will appear in cars over the next few years as part of Mercedes’ Modular Architecture platform.

A lightweight version of MB.OS (Mercedes-Benz Operating System) – essentially a third-generation version of the existing operating system MBUX infotainment system– will be used in the Mercedes E-Class from this year, with a full system planned for late 2024/early 2025.

The cloud-based MB.OS will support over-the-air updates, meaning a vehicle’s features won’t be locked into a model year — “enhancing customer lifetime value long after original car purchase,” Mercedes says .

Mercedes 2023 E-Class.

Mercedes 2023 E 350 Sedan

Traditionally, automakers have added dashboard functionality by purchasing separate electronic control units from various suppliers that are strung together to create a seamless high-tech car look. MB.OS changes that, as Mercedes will build and own its own software stack.

“So this is where there is a major paradigm shift happening in the auto industry, where every car company is working on some version of this model,” a Mercedes representative said on a call with reporters. “We made this decision four years ago and are now on the brink of implementation.”

Still, there are partners involved.For example, Google will pass Google Map Integrations more akin to mobile interfaces (think photos, business hours, ratings and reviews). The route will also display real-time and forecast traffic information, as well as automatic diversions.

support transfer to electric car, the navigation software will also provide more precise and reliable range management. “This is only possible because MB.OS has access to all vehicle data, such as state of charge and energy consumption,” says Mercedes.

However, not every global customer will see Google Maps. For example, in China, where Google is banned, customers will see AMAP. In South Korea, drivers will see their preferred provider. “We will use the preferred map in each region,” Mercedes said.

2023 E-Class Sprint.

2023 E-Class Dash with full screen. (Image source: Mercedes-Benz)

The company said that the MBUX (Mercedes-Benz User Experience) system will continue to exist as part of MB.OS. The dashboard screen will keep a similar design, but with a more modern look and more entertainment options, such as the ability to watch YouTube or join a video call. These changes won’t be as drastic as switching from Windows to Mac, for example.

MB.OS also supports another big goal: launching the world’s first certified Level 3 autonomous driving systemwith the help of Nvidia software and a new partnership with Luminar.

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“The company focuses on Level 3 The ultimate goal of conditional autonomous driving is to drive at speeds of up to 130 km/h (81 mph) in its final iteration,” said Mercedes. “To achieve this, Mercedes-Benz has partnered with Nvidia collaborates to build a fully programmable and updatable driving automation system. The vehicle’s ‘driving brain’ is an Nvidia Drive Orin system-on-a-chip capable of 254 trillion operations per second to process data from an array of sensors around the vehicle. “

All of these in-car improvements — not to mention the sizable cost of electrification — require a lot of cash, and Mercedes is looking to create new revenue streams by buying in-car apps.

“The digital side of the business does have growth potential and attractive profitability potential,” Mercedes said during the Q&A. “Nobody knows how big this potential pot of gold is, but it supports our journey tremendously. .”

MB.OS also helps turn up the volume on targeted advertising. “Our approach is this: we standardize the architecture so we have full access and control over the data tree,” says Magnus Östberg, chief software officer at Mercedes. “The data tree allows us to fully communicate with our customers so that we can keep up with market trends.”

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