Mercedes-Benz tries to improve customer experience through a new voice navigation system

According to its press release, Mercedes-Benz announced that the company built the app what3words into its navigation system.

what3words is the simplest way to talk about location. Every 3 m x 3 m in the world has a unique 3 word address. Now every precise location has a simple and accurate address that’s far easier to input than a regular street address. A restaurant front door, an airport car park entrance or a remote beachside viewpoint is an example.

The problem here is that

  • Input hassles: Many street addresses are too long and complicated for easy text input. Voice systems often struggle to pull up the correct destination, especially if you have an accent.
  • Lack of accuracy: Have you ever given your navigation system an address, only for the system did not recognize it, or take you to the wrong place? Perhaps you ended up at the back of a building instead of the front entrance, or at a completely different street with the same name.
  • They don’t cover everywhere: How many of the places you need to navigate to have no address at all? Parks, beaches, sports fields and car parks, for example, are off-limits for navigation systems.
  • Language barrier: Street addresses can only be used in the local language. Visitors to a country often struggle to use navigation systems, and mispronounced addresses can direct drivers far from their intended destination.

Who is what3words?

Based on Crunchbase, the company profile of what3words is described as

what3words is the simplest way to talk about location. It has divided the world into a grid of 3m x 3m squares, each with a unique address made from 3 words. Now people can refer to any precise location – a delivery entrance, a picnic spot or a drone landing point – using three simple words.

what3words is helping improve businesses around the world, and paving the way for social and economic progress in developing nations. It can be used via the free mobile app or online map. what3words can also be built into any other app, platform or website, with just a few lines of code.

What is a Voice Assistant?

According to Smartsheet’s explanations, a voice assistant is defined as follows.

To call any technology that makes our lives easier by one name is almost impossible. There are a variety of terms that refer to agents that can perform tasks or services for an individual, and they are almost interchangeable — but not quite. They differ mainly based on how we interact with the technology, the app, or a combination of both.

Here are some basic definitions, similarities, and differences:

  • Intelligent Personal Assistant: This is software that can assist people with basic tasks, usually using natural language. Intelligent personal assistants can go online and search for an answer to a user’s question. Either text or voice can trigger an action.
  • Automated Personal Assistant: This term is synonymous with intelligent personal assistant. 
  • Smart Assistant: This term usually refers to the types of physical items that can provide various services by using smart speakers that listen for a wake word to become active and perform certain tasks. Amazon’s Echo, Google’s Home, and Apple’s HomePod are types of smart assistants.
  • Virtual Digital Assistants: These are automated software applications or platforms that assist the user by understanding natural language in either written or spoken form.
  • Chatbot: Text is the main way to get assistance from a chatbot. Chatbots can simulate a conversation with a human user. Many companies use them in the customer service sector to answer basic questions and connect with a live person if necessary.
  • Voice Assistant: The key here is voice. A voice assistant is a digital assistant that uses voice recognition, speech synthesis, and natural language processing (NLP) to provide a service through a particular application.

A Voice Assistant will be able to solve many issues around the world

As we can see the example between Mercedes-Benz and what3words, a voice assistant can make our life better. In fact, many people feel challenges to find the place where they want to go in foreign countries. For example, if a German traveler goes to South Korea, he or she cannot speak Korean well. Or he or she cannot pronounce Korean words correctly (in this sense, “correctly” means that a voice assistant system cannot discern his or her pronunciation). What he or she will do in order to reach the place? Probably, he or she will talk to pedestrian about the place. Have you experienced the similar situation?

Therefore, the German car giant’s initiative is reasonable and noticeable. The example is only one aspect of a voice assistant’s applications. Thus, we will be able to take its benefits in our daily lives. For instance, many people use smart speaker at their home. They will ask a question, listen music, check the weather, and purchase something. We sometimes feel more convenient, faster and easier to speak something than to type it Therefore, it seems that we can enjoy new applications with a voice assistant in the near future.

In addition to this, voice will be more critical to connect between machines and us. As we see the other article about Podcast, it also becomes more popular and important now.