Volkswagen integrates ChatGPT into its cars, global premiere at CES 2024
Volkswagen, in partnership with Cerence Inc, becomes first volume carmaker to offer Chat GPT; current MEB and MQB evo models from VW Group brands will have access to automotive-grade ChatGPT integration; says personal data is protected as ChatGPT does not gain access to vehicle information.
At CES 2024, the world's leading electronics trade fair underway from January 9-12 in Las Vegas, Volkswagen is having the world premiere of the first vehicles in which the artificial-intelligence-based chatbot ChatGPT is integrated into its IDA voice assistant.
In future, customers will have seamless access to the constantly growing artificial intelligence database in all Volkswagen models equipped with the IDA voice assistant and have researched content read out to them while driving.
Cerence Chat Pro from VW’s technology partner Cerence Inc is the foundation of the new function, which offers a uniquely intelligent, automotive-grade ChatGPT integration. Volkswagen will be the first volume manufacturer to offer Chat GPT as a standard feature from the second quarter of 2024 in many production vehicles.
The new chatbot is offered in conjunction with the latest generation of infotainment in the following models: ID.703, ID.4, ID.5, ID.3, the all-new Tiguan and the all-new Passat, as well as in the new Golf04. Enabled by Cerence Chat Pro, the integration of ChatGPT into the backend of the Volkswagen voice assistant offers a multitude of new capabilities that go far beyond the previous voice control. For example, the IDA voice assistant can be used to control the infotainment, navigation, and air conditioning, or to answer general knowledge questions. In the future, AI will provide additional information in response to questions that go beyond this as part of its continuously expanding capabilities. This can be helpful on many levels during a car journey: Enriching conversations, clearing up questions, interacting in intuitive language, receiving vehicle-specific information, and much more – purely hands-free.
ChatGPT does not gain access to any vehicle data
Volkswagen states there is no need to create a new account, install a new app or activate ChatGPT: The voice assistant is activated by saying ‘Hello IDA’ or pressing the button on the steering wheel. IDA automatically prioritises whether a vehicle function should be executed, a destination searched or the temperature adjusted. If the request cannot be answered by the Volkswagen system, it is forwarded anonymously to AI and the familiar Volkswagen voice responds.
ChatGPT does not gain access to any vehicle data; questions and answers are deleted immediately to ensure the highest possible level of data protection. This is facilitated by Cerence Chat Pro, which leverages a multitude of sources, including ChatGPT, to enable IDA to provide accurate and relevant responses to nearly every query imaginable. The feature also prioritises security and seamless integration with IDA’s myriad capabilities, delivering ease of use for drivers.
"Volkswagen has always democratised technology and made it accessible to the many. This is simply ingrained in our DNA. As a result, we are now the first volume manufacturer to make this innovative technology a standard feature in vehicles from the compact segment upwards. Thanks to the seamless integration of ChatGPT and strong collaboration with our partner, Cerence, we are offering our drivers added value and direct access to the AI-based research tool. This also underlines the innovative strength of our new products," says Kai Grünitz, Member of the Board of Management Volkswagen Brand for technical Development.
"We are proud to build on our automotive expertise and our long-standing partnership with Volkswagen to offer its customers new innovations that leverage generative AI and large language models – even after they have purchased a vehicle," says Stefan Ortmanns, CEO of Cerence. “With Cerence Chat Pro, VW is empowered with an automotive-grade ChatGPT integration that offers unmatched flexibility, customisation, and ease of deployment, while prioritising security and usability for drivers. As we look to the future, together Volkswagen and Cerence will explore collaboration to design a new, large-language-model-based (LLM) user experience as the foundation of Volkswagen’s next-generation in-car assistant."
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