GM enables drivers to order espressos, pancakes from the road

GM enables drivers to order espressos, pancakes from the road

General Motors Co. has launched technology into about 2 million 2017 and 2018 US vehicles that allows owners to order and pay for their favorite Starbucks or Dunkin' Donuts brew before pulling up to the drive-through window. He sails through the drive-through - he has to say his name at the speaker so the Dunkin' employees know it's the weird guy who bought his coffee with his vehicle, but GM doesn't show that part - grabs his "my morning coffee, hot coffee", and off he goes, excited to use those 25 seconds he saved by using GM's in-car technology to, I don't know, browse Twitter?

"The average American spends 46 minutes per day on the road driving", said Santiago Chamorro, vice president for Global Connected Customer Experience, GM, citing a 2016 report from AAA. What this means, in practical terms, is that drivers of select Chevrolet, Buick, GMC, and Cadillac vehicles will be able to use Marketplace to order coffee or food, make reservations for dinner and at hotels, locate the nearest gas stations, and save money on services.

GM's vision, presumably, is that people will use their vehicle dashboards, rather than their smartphones, for "on the road" transactions. Chamorro said more merchants are expected to join. "We know customers will appreciate the opportunity to connect and interact with their favorite brands from the vehicle, in a safer and more convenient way". The service relies on the embedded 4G LTE connectivity available in certain models, and it will work with the driver's existing data plan.

"For most retailers and consumer brands the daily commute is the only time not accessible in a consumers' day", Chamorro said.

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By the end of 2018, GM expects 4 million of its Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet and GMC vehicles in the USA will have Marketplace.

Initial partners include a diverse group of large companies such as Starbucks (sbux), ExxonMobil (xom), and Wingstop. It leverages machine-learning from real-time interaction data, such as location, time of day and a driver's established digital relationship with third-party merchants, to offer personalized experiences.

- IHOP, allowing to search for nearby restaurants and order from your auto. Although it varies by individual merchants, GM earns money off the platform through revenue sharing, platform-placement fees and the exchange of marketing support. Customers will not be charged for using the service or the data transmitted to and from the auto while making transactions, he said.

The app, dubbed Marketplace, allows drivers to browse deals and place orders through an in-dash touchscreen with several major brands such as Starbucks Corp., TGI Friday's, and Dunkin' Donuts Inc.

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