Volkswagen is delving into the realm of generative AI with the introduction of ChatGPT in its vehicles, a move set to materialize in the second quarter of 2024. The German automaker plans to incorporate ChatGPT across various vehicle models, including the Tiguan, Passat, Golf, and its electric vehicle lineup, initially rolling out the feature in Europe.
This integration aims to amplify the capabilities of Volkswagen’s voice assistant within the IDA car, fostering more natural communication between the vehicle and its driver. Users will be empowered to leverage the voice assistant for controlling essential car functions like the heater, air conditioning, and obtaining answers to general knowledge inquiries.
Volkswagen envisions the future potential of ChatGPT going beyond basic functions, contributing to enriched conversations, clarification of queries, intuitive language interactions, and hands-free access to vehicle information. Notably, the company assures users that no new accounts or additional applications are required; access to the chatbot can be initiated by uttering the alert word “Hello IDA” or by pressing a button in the car engine.
In addressing data privacy concerns, Volkswagen emphasizes that OpenAI, the creator of ChatGPT, does not have access to driving statistics, and all questions and answers are promptly deleted to uphold stringent data protection standards.
Highlighting OpenAI’s platform for creating specialized versions of ChatGPT, Volkswagen reveals that through the GPT store, users can access these AI agents, known as OpenAI GPTs. While the voice assistant can perform routine tasks like activating seat heaters and defrosting windows, it currently lacks advanced conversational skills and may struggle with complex navigation requests.
Acknowledging common challenges such as false positives and the need for repeated instructions, Volkswagen positions itself as the pioneer automaker to formally embrace ChatGPT, a renowned player in the ongoing AI competition. The integration is made possible through collaboration with software company Cerence, with Cerence Chat Pro enhancing Volkswagen’s voice assistant to deliver pertinent answers to a broad spectrum of questions.
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