FROM THE APP TO THE DIGITAL ECOSYSTEM: THE NEW GENERATION OF MERCEDES ME APPS LAUNCHES
Stuttgart. Mercedes-Benz is presenting the new generation of Mercedes me Apps and its own, standardised developer platform. This sees the Mercedes me App, which links the vehicle with the smartphone and was unveiled in 2015, turning into a digital ecosystem. On this joint basis, new services can be developed flexibly and individually in future. The offer initially encompasses three apps: Mercedes me, Mercedes me Store and Mercedes me Service.
The three apps are available to download with immediate effect in the App Store and in the Google Play Store and will be available in over 40 Mercedes me markets by the end of the year. They were developed in close, international cooperation with partners and customers. The perspective of the users was decisive during development: the new Mercedes-Benz Apps combine improved base functionalities with an even more attractive customer experience. They facilitate, for example, shorter update cycles. Operation is even easier and more intuitive at the same time.
Britta Seeger, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Mercedes-Benz AG, responsible for Sales: "The new generation of Mercedes me Apps makes it even easier for our customers to contact Mercedes-Benz around the clock. They can book a service appointment at their preferred dealership or send their next travel destination directly to their car by app, for example. We are always focussed on making life easier for our customers. We are continually broadening our range of digital services to this end. The new Mercedes me App generation provides even simpler and intuitive access to our products and new services, such as a function for conveniently opening or closing windows or the panoramic roof by app."
Intelligently networked: the new Mercedes me Apps
All Mercedes me Apps will be closely linked with one another in future. This means that only a single log-in using the Mercedes me ID is now necessary, enabling users to switch intuitively and quickly between the apps. Specific functions are allocated to every single app. They are adapted to customer requirements visually and in terms of content.
The Mercedes me App links the smartphone with the owner's vehicle. This enables key status information – such as mileage, range or tyre pressure – to be displayed very conveniently. Digital command functions additionally enable the stationary heater, the soft top or the side windows to be operated by app, and a brand new feature serves to flash up the headlamps so that the vehicle can be located in a dark car park, for example.
The Mercedes me Store App offers convenient access to the digital products from Mercedes-Benz. It provides a quick overview of the term of each of the Mercedes me connect services and on-demand features used. These can be extended via smartphone at any time, as required.
The Mercedes me Service App provides a reminder in good time of service appointments such as service or maintenance work. It displays active warning lamps and recommends appropriate measures, such as checking the tyre pressure at the next filling station. The app allows appointments with the workshop to be booked directly via smartphone. The app also offers practical how-to videos with interesting information on ideal use of the vehicle.
The new generation of Mercedes me Apps was developed in an international internal Daimler community, above all together with the USA and China and trialled in close cooperation with customers. Following initial internal tests, at the beginning of 2020 Mercedes-Benz first began a pilot project in France, Spain and the UK and as of the beginning of June in Ireland and Hungary. The new apps are now available in the Apple and Google App Stores in 35 markets, which now also include Germany; additional Mercedes-Benz markets, incl. China and the USA are to be phased in in due course.
A common basis: the Mercedes-Benz Mobile SDK
The actual ground-breaking innovation runs in the background with the new Mercedes me Apps, as these are based for the first time on a common, standardised development platform. In 2019 Mercedes-Benz was the first vehicle manufacturer to grant software developers from all over the world access to the Software Development Kit (for short: SDK).
The SDK functions as a type of programming construction kit: it makes available interfaces to the vehicle on which the new apps can build. As part of this the security of the data is guaranteed at every point in time.
Here Mercedes-Benz has clear guidelines on which data are made available to programmers. The fundamental principle is this: all Mercedes-Benz vehicles have extensive safety and anti-theft systems. Secure access to systems, data security, data privacy and anti-theft protection are key elements of our research and development activities.
Best Customer Experience 4.0: customer requirements in the digital age
The Mercedes me Apps are a key component of the sales initiative "Best Customer Experience 4.0" in the Mercedes-Benz Cars business division. "Best Customer Experience 4.0" is the brand's way of focusing its sales on the changing requirements of customers in the digital age. The aim is to offer customers a seamless and convenient experience whenever they want to contact Mercedes-Benz – irrespective of the time and place or the channel they are using. That is why Mercedes-Benz is seamlessly blending physical retail with the digital channels and is redesigning it with innovative store and location concepts. At the same time the company is expecting to achieve a quarter of the global passenger car sales via online channels by the year 2025 together with its sales partners. The foundation stone for further sales development according to current customer requirements was laid back in 2013 with "Best Customer Experience", in order to make it even easier for new and existing customers to access the products and services of Mercedes-Benz.