Google Cloud and Mercedes-Benz Deepen Partnership to Power New Customer Experiences with AI

LAS VEGAS, April 9, 2024 ~ In a major announcement at the Cloud Next '24 conference in Las Vegas, Google Cloud revealed an expansion of its partnership with luxury automaker Mercedes-Benz. This collaboration will see the integration of AI and generative AI (gen AI) technologies from Google Cloud's Vertex AI platform into key customer experiences for Mercedes-Benz.

The partnership aims to enhance the overall customer experience by infusing cutting-edge e-commerce capabilities into Mercedes' online storefront. This will be achieved through the use of gen AI-powered smart sales assistants and Google-quality search and recommendations features. Additionally, Mercedes plans to leverage Google Cloud's AI tools, including Vertex AI and Gemini models, to personalize and improve its marketing campaigns for customers worldwide.

Ola Källenius, Chief Executive Officer of Mercedes-Benz, expressed excitement about the partnership, stating that "partnering with the very best in their respective fields is an important part of our software strategy." He believes that Google is the perfect example of this and that their collaboration will help deliver intelligent vehicles and create personalized experiences for customers.

With more consumers turning to online research and shopping when buying a car, Google Cloud's AI technologies will play a crucial role in transforming Mercedes' e-commerce approach. By 2024, the automaker plans to deploy a new smart sales assistant on its websites using Google's Gemini models. This virtual assistant, known as the Mercedes-Benz Virtual Assistant (MVA), will be able to converse in natural language and assist shoppers with finding a suitable car model, scheduling a test drive, or even making a purchase. Furthermore, Mercedes will explore using Google Cloud's Vertex AI Search offering to embed high-quality search and recommendations directly into its websites.

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The improved e-commerce functionalities will allow consumers to easily find relevant car models and products through broad or nuanced queries such as "Newest EV models that seat five people" or "2024 red wagon." The MVA is already deployed in European markets like the UK and Germany, with plans to roll out the smart sales assistant to websites in Europe and overseas in 2024.

Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google and Alphabet, also expressed excitement about the partnership, stating that Mercedes-Benz has a long history of using technology to create exceptional experiences for their customers. He believes that Google's advanced AI will help engage with customers in new ways, from improving customer service to optimizing website experiences.

In addition to e-commerce, Mercedes has also been utilizing Google Cloud's conversational AI technology, Dialogflow, in its U.S. call centers for the past six months. This has resulted in over a million calls being handled by automated agents in more than 30 languages. Building on this success, Mercedes plans to expand its use of conversational AI in other markets. This move will not only improve the call center experience for customers but also allow service agents to focus on more complex requests that require a human touch.

Furthermore, Mercedes-Benz has been leveraging Google Cloud's Vertex AI platform to maximize the value of its customer data. This data is managed using Google Cloud's data warehouse platform, BigQuery, and is used to enhance the website experience for customers in the United States through personalized content based on better audience segmentation.

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The partnership between Google and Mercedes-Benz began in February 2023 when the automaker selected Google Maps Platform as the foundation for its own branded navigation experience. Today, over three million customers have access to reliable Place Details provided by Google in their Mercedes vehicles. The partnership has also included YouTube as part of the Mercedes infotainment experience and has seen the carmaker utilizing various AI, data, and open infrastructure solutions from Google Cloud.

This latest announcement marks a new phase of this strategic partnership between two industry leaders who are committed to using technology to enhance customer experiences. With plans to leverage Google Cloud technologies for their next generation of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS), it is clear that Mercedes-Benz is dedicated to staying at the forefront of innovation and providing their customers with the best possible experience.
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