Mercedes and Microsoft Join Forces to Integrate your Office with your Car
Let’s just hope this integration goes a lot smoother than the release Windows 8...by Robert Moore, on
IFA is to technology companies what NAIAS is to the automotive manufacturers; meaning that it serves as a venue for the debut of the latest in technology advancements from the world’s leading technology companies. While we here at TopSpeed were focused on things more automotive, IFA Berlin kicked off quietly (at least to us, anyway) on September 2, 2016. While there isn’t a lot of stuff going on there that really snatches our interest, Mercedes was there, and it announced a new partnership with Microsoft.
Now, before all you Mercedes fans and diehard Apple guys start ripping out your hair and showering for hours at a time, it’s not as bad as you might think. Microsoft isn’t exactly taking over the Mercedes infotainment system, but this new feature that is called “In Car Office,” will bring Microsoft Exchange integration to the Mercedes dashboard. According to MSPowerUser, this will allow you to access your work calendar from your car. Furthermore, this new feature will allow the car to automatically place scheduled conference calls when necessary and will provide navigation services for meeting locations that are also scheduled on your work calendar. See, not so bad right?
Keep reading for the rest of the story.
Looking Back; Moving Forward
This announcement comes just months after Microsoft proclaimed that instead of building its own autonomous vehicle that it’s more focused on building the operating system for autonomous cars. I know what you’re thinking: “Yikes.” I’ve used windows as one of my primary operating systems (next to Max OSX and Linux) for years, and I’ve got to say, that blue screen of death always rears its ugly head at some point. The thought of a $50,000 autonomous car having an OS failure while it barrels down the highway doesn’t exactly seem like a good way to spend my commute to work, however it seems as if Microsoft is easing into this transition slowly. Outside of this partnership with Mercedes, Microsoft also teamed up earlier this year with Harmon and Volvo to bring a handful of office features into Volvo vehicles. And, integrating Microsoft Exchange into Mercedes is truly a baby step.
For the record, “In Car Office” should become available in Mercedes vehicles starting in 2017. For now, there is no mention of what vehicles will see it first, but I suspect we’ll see it debut in models like the S-Class and G-Class SUV first, with it trickling down to low-end models progressively as time goes on. Let’s just hope Microsoft can solve all of its stupid problems with Windows before it dives into the Autonomous car business altogether.
Source: News Every Day