Visually impressive. Easy to operate. Onboard AI assistant eager to learn. The MBUX Hyperscreen is one of the highlights in the EQS. It represents the emotional intelligence of the all-electric upper-class model. The large, curved screen unit stretches almost the entire width from the left to the right A-pillar.
The new MBUX generation with intelligent new features such as Mercedes Travel Knowledge, instantly makes you feel you have travelled into the future. Or, into the science fiction past; and that you have met K.I.T.T., the smart talkative car from the 1980s TV show Knight Rider.
Mercedes-Benz: MBUX Hyperscreen
German automaker Mercedes-Benz premiered its new MBUX Hyperscreen on 7th January. A few days after its digital world premiere, the new MBUX Hyperscreen from Mercedes-Benz celebrated its trade-show debut on 11th January at the first all-digital Consumer Electronics Show (CES) organised by the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), and usually held in Las Vegas.
According to the car manufacturer, with a width of 141 centimetres, the unique screen unit consisting of three apparently seamlessly merged displays is not only the largest human-machine interface built by Mercedes-Benz to date, but also by far the most intelligent — aesthetically impressive, radically easy to operate, and downright eager to learn.
Thanks to the power of Artificial Intelligence technology, the display and operating system adapt completely to the user and make personalised suggestions for numerous infotainment, comfort, and vehicle functions depending on the situation. The MBUX Hyperscreen was set to be launched in the fully electric EQS luxury saloon.
“The new MBUX Hyperscreen combines unique electrical aesthetics with outstanding user-friendliness. A decisive strength is the clever networking of all systems based on intelligent, adaptive software. This makes the Hyperscreen the brain of the car; it’s connected to and communicates with all components of the vehicle,” said Sajjad Khan, Member of the Board of Management of Mercedes-Benz AG and CTO.
Mercedes Travel Knowledge
Exclusively at CES, Mercedes-Benz presented a new MBUX feature for the first time: Mercedes Travel Knowledge. This intelligent function evaluates map data and its surroundings, providing a lot of information about interesting landmarks along the route, from individual buildings or points of interest to entire cities.
The driver or passenger can simply ask a question as they drive past — for example, “Hey Mercedes, what can you tell me about this building?” or “Hey Mercedes, what is the name of the restaurant on the left?” — and the information appears on the respective display as well as spoken by the AI voice assistant. Thanks to the flexible update concept from MBUX via the cloud, this feature will also be immediately available in the new S-Class in addition to the EQS.
To get to the most important applications on the MBUX Hyperscreen, the user does not have to scroll through submenus or enter voice commands. This is why Mercedes-Benz calls the system a zero layer.
The most important applications, such as navigation or telephone, are always offered situationally and contextually on the top level in the field of vision. More than 20 other functions — from the active massage programme to suggestions for the to-do list — are automatically displayed with the help of Artificial Intelligence if they are relevant for the customer.
“When developing the MBUX Hyperscreen, the focus was clearly on the customer,” said Sajjad Khan. “The goal was a concept without distracting the driver or complicated operation, but one that is capable of learning thanks to Artificial Intelligence.”
According to Khan, the MBUX Hyperscreen understands the customer better and better and thus delivers a customised, personalised infotainment, and operating offer before the user has to click on anything. This is customer orientation and digital thinking in 2021.
Personalised suggestions with the aid of onboard Artificial Intelligence
Infotainment systems offer numerous and comprehensive functions. Several operating steps are often required to control them. In order to further reduce these interaction steps, Mercedes-Benz has developed a user interface with context-sensitive awareness with the help of Artificial Intelligence.
The MBUX system proactively displays the right functions at the right time for the user, supported by Artificial Intelligence. The context-sensitive awareness is constantly optimised by changes in the surroundings and user behaviour. The so-called zero-layer provides the user at the top level of the MBUX information architecture with dynamic, aggregated content from the entire MBUX system and related services.
Mercedes-Benz has investigated the usage behaviour of the first MBUX generation. Most of the use cases fall in the Navigation, Radio/Media, and Telephony categories. The navigation application is therefore always at the centre of the screen unit with full functionality.
Over 20 further functions — from the active massage programme through the birthday reminder, to the suggestion for the to-do list — are automatically offered with the aid of Artificial Intelligence when they are relevant to the customer. Magic Modules is the in-house name the developers have given to these suggestion modules, which are shown on the zero-layer.
Here below are four use cases. The user can accept or reject the respective suggestion with just one click:
- If you always call a certain friend on the way home on Tuesday evenings, you will be asked to make a corresponding call on that day of the week and at this time of day. A business card with its contact information appears, and — if stored — its image appears. All MBUX suggestions are linked to the user’s profile. If someone else drives the EQS on a Tuesday night, this recommendation is not made — or there is another, depending on the preferences of the other user.
- If the EQS driver regularly uses the massage function according to the hot stone principle in winter, the system learns and automatically suggests the comfort function in wintry temperatures.
- If the user regularly switches on the heating of the steering wheel and other surfaces for seat heating, for example, this is suggested to him as soon as he presses the seat heating.
- The chassis of the EQS can be lifted to provide more ground clearance. A useful function for steep garage entrances or sleep policemen. MBUX remembers the GPS position at which the user made use of the Vehicle Lift-Up function. If the vehicle approaches the GPS position again, MBUX independently proposes to lift the EQS.
- For haptic feedback during operation, a total of twelve actuators are located under the touchscreen surfaces. If a finger touches certain areas there, they trigger a noticeable vibration of the cover plate.
- Eight CPU cores, 24 gigabytes of RAM, and 46.4 gigabytes per second RAM memory bandwidth are among the technical highlights.
- Two coatings of the cover plate reduce reflections and make cleaning easier. The curved glass itself consists of particularly scratch-resistant aluminium silicate.
- The safety measures include predetermined breaking points alongside the side outlet openings as well as five holders which can yield in a targeted manner in a crash thanks to their honeycomb structure.
- With the measurement data of a 1 multifunction camera and also 1 light sensor the brightness of the screen is adapted to the ambient conditions.
- With up to seven profiles, the display section can be individualised for the front passenger.
In the future of driving, the MBUX Hyperscreen is certainly one of those innovative features that will take you to many exciting adventures.