Mercedes owners in the U.S. will soon add a new luxury to their already luxurious vehicles: ChatGPT. The automaker is adding OpenAI’s conversational AI agent to its MBUX infotainment system, though what it could possibly be needed for is hard to say.
U.S. owners of models that use MBUX will be able to opt into a beta program starting tomorrow, June 16, activating ChatGPT functionality. This will enable the highly versatile large language model to augment the car’s conversation skills. You can join up simply by telling your car “Hey Mercedes, I want to join the beta program.”
It’s not really clear what for, though. After all, a car is a pretty well constrained environment. People need to drive, navigate, and control their media and the car’s basic functions, and certainly a voice interface is sometimes the safest or best option for doing so without taking their eyes off the road.
ChatGPT, on the other hand, excels in seeming human while performing a back-and-forth on any topic, and inventing new facts to keep the exchange running smoothly. It can summarize and synthesize existing content, write or plagiarize code, or help you come up with wedding vows. Are any of these things you would want to do while driving, or even in the passenger’s seat?