See more projectsHigh-Tech Entertainment E-Space for a Luxury Car Brand

High-Tech Entertainment E-Space for a Luxury Car Brand

Media & Entertainment
Jakob Vollenstein

Jakob Vollenstein

Product manager

"Andersen won for its ability to create unique digital products"

High-Tech Entertainment E-Space for a Luxury Car Brand

About the client

Mercedes-Benz is a high-end luxury car manufacturer offering a range of products and services, including financing, leasing, car rental, fleet management, and innovative mobility services. They have a global presence of showrooms with their premium vehicles.

Location:Germany
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Project overview

The local authorities in the customer's city made a decision concerning car dealerships – car showrooms had to be removed from the downtown area. The showrooms of Mercedes-Benz had to comply. In order to showcase the brand's vehicles, an innovative and digitized way needed to be found and implemented in technical terms. This is how the Mercedes Me Café concept was born. It was an important step towards the Mercedes-Benz digital transformation necessitated by the new promotion regulations. These Cafés are spaces where the brand can reach its potential clients.

This concept boasts a range of interactive elements to draw the guests’ attention to the Mercedes-Benz brand. These interactive user capabilities are delivered via touchscreen displays.

The marketing agency selected and contracted by Mercedes-Benz created the concept of Mercedes Me Café. This concept presupposed several sophisticated and challenging tech tasks. They were as follows:

  • Crafting the program component for the Mercedes Me Café infrastructure;
  • Delivering the software that would be a base for the required touchscreens;
  • Generating a convenient, reliable, and intuitive system to visually select car configuration;
  • Seamlessly integrating between ordering food, car configurations, and games.

Andersen’s technology experts, as a team with numerous entertainment projects behind them, won the bid to engineer software for Mercedes Me Café. This choice was determined by our broad IT experience and deep tech expertise in everything related to interactive and engaging solutions for entertainment and media. Another important factor was our advanced UI skills needed to ensure unique and pleasant user experiences for high-end audiences.

duration5 months
technologies
С#
ASP.NET
XAML
WinRT
LINQ, XML
Unity3D
Concept illustration
The platform's welcome screen

Solution

The software for the Mercedes-Benz digital showroom was supposed to be built as an isolated Microsoft Windows app. Andersen’s engineers needed to develop a program capable of functioning in full-screen mode and excluding user access to other apps and OS services.

Some difficulties were caused by the need to launch various apps inside the software shell. In order to overcome and resolve those difficulties and deliver outstanding software for Mercedes-Benz, our developers built a sort of individual sub-OS to be launched inside Windows. This sub-OS runs its own web browser, social networks, email clients, and other apps. On top of that, the shell has an original UI with perfectly optimized controls for screens of various sizes. This is how we ensured the maximum level of convenience for all the visitors and guests of Mercedes Me Café.

The games had been developed by third-party developers and delivered before the Mercedes Me Café project started. As a result, they needed to be running within the entertainment solution without any visible involvement of Microsoft Windows. This situation caused another tech problem – by default, once the end-user exits the game, they inevitably return to the Windows interface, not the Café. Andersen’s team effectively dealt with this potential issue. Our IT specialists tailored the written code and integrated it into the interactive program shell. This made it possible to launch the games directly from the Mercedes Me Café software framework and return right to it after sessions end.

App functionality

  • The solution makes it possible to order meals and drinks from the menu. These orders are then uploaded to the Café’s functional terminals to be processed by the Café’s staff. What is particularly important is that users interact with multimedia marketing content when using the menu;
  • The Café’s touchscreens are interconnected within a single network that has access to the Internet. Via them, users can surf the web and social platforms, use apps, pay their bills, interact with other screens, and view multimedia content;
  • Another challenge that we have successfully tackled has become a source of pride for us. Andersen's team developed a visual selection system for various car configurations. The Mercedes virtual showroom system uses a camera to analyze clients’ appearance, including their age, gender, clothing styles, hair, and other details. Based on that information, the system generates configuration suggestions;
  • In order to engage the guests of Mercedes Me Café even further, our car software experts added the possibility of creating dynamic videos. They are based on the choices end-users make and are intended to motivate them to sign-up for a test-drive of a Mercedes vehicle similar to a previously suggested configuration;
  • The five preinstalled games are a key attractive capability offered by the touchscreens. They are all designed in conformity with the Mercedes-Benz style and act as a user engagement factor;
  • Ensuring the web app is responsive and provides the best possible experience across different device types and sizes;
  • Integrating with analytics tools to track user interactions and app performance.

Project results

The solution delivered by Andersen was a crucial part of the Mercedes Me Café car showroom project. As user reviews indicate, the target audience likes touchscreens. They also appreciate such opportunities as multimedia marketing materials, games, and the ability to select a car configuration.

The Mercedes Me Café project became effective leverage, attracting new local clients to Mercedes-Benz. It succeeded in directing potential clients to the dealerships’ showrooms, although there were no physical cars available.

Later, this successful project turned out to be an extra competitive advantage under the conditions imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic. With the need for greater social distancing, Mercedes Me Cafés can serve as a point for contactless purchases. On top of that, they can, in a digitized fashion, provide potential buyers with highly personalized and luxurious client experiences.

Customer review

Person

Jakob Vollenstein

Product manager

GermanyGermany

Review

We selected software developers based on a competition that Andersen won for its ability to create unique digital products. Our Mercedes Cafe app had to serve customers on-demand and handle multimedia marketing materials. The developers completed the task on time, and the app functionality is beyond doubt thanks to the QA team and analysts' work.