Mercedes-Benz will soon be offering a new feature on their S, CL, and C class lineup, thanks to Yahoo and Google. The new feature is called Search & Send. It will allow Mercedes-Benz owners to send directions, obtained either from Google Maps or Yahoo Maps to their vehicles’ navigation system via a new “Send to Car” icon. From there, by pressing the i-button on the Tele Aid system in the vehicle, the navigation unit will download and make available the directions. Search & Send is the first feature of its kind in the U.S. and is set to debut on September 5th, 2007.
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It would be interesting to know why they choose to go to Google and Yahoo, instead of just one of them. It could be because Mercedes-Benz is a very brand conscious automaker and they don’t want to alienate their customers by offering a service that they might not regularly use. So maybe they wanted to cover their bases by appealing to two rivals’ users rather than choose one and risk adoption by some of their customers and dislike by the others. Either way, they will probably still have customers who don’t like the service. For one, they forgot about some major players in the map game and not everyone likes Google or Yahoo maps. And two, some people may not want to bother with the service because they don’t like it or because they simply prefer another method to get directions on the go, like their phone. I know that I would certainly use the service, it’s just getting the new Mercedes that would be the issue.