Mercedes-Benz has joined the growing number of automakers that are developing mobile augmented reality applications. Automakers are showing interest in the technology because it opens up a new avenue of consumer engagement. Because of the widespread use and ownership of smart phone, the mobile application market has proven to be more than just a passing fancy for consumers. Today, companies not developing mobile apps may be missing a major opportunity.
The manufacturer has developed an app for the iOS and Android platforms that allows smart phone users to take virtual tours of their new C-class MercedesSport. The app allows users to customize the vehicle with a number of features that are representative of what can be attached to the physical product. The final, virtual image can be sent to computers, were consumers can find dealers in their area. There are some graphical glitches present in the application, but Mercedes has plans to fix these bugs in the coming months.
The application is geared toward the German market. Depending on the response from consumers, however, the automaker may choose to expand the app to other markets around the world. Toyota and Honda have developed similar applications that are used in the U.S. These apps have seen modest success, but consumers do seem enthusiastic about augmented reality technology in general. Mercedes-Benz has yet to reveal plans to further its AR endeavors.